The book is for clinical professionals and volunteers in NHS and third sector settings, and for those in legal, social work, managerial, commissioning and Home Office roles.

It is ideal for anyone wanting to think critically about their work. The narrative is enriched by voices of people with first-hand experience.

Authors from a range of professional backgrounds discuss how mental health can be understood in the context of people’s diverse lives, cultures and extreme experiences. They consider each stage of accessing and using services and the challenges and dilemmas faced by all involved, whether clients, clinicians or service planners.  They demonstrate how those seeking asylum have mental health needs that require particular attention if people are not to be unwittingly discriminated against.

There is a wealth of practical information about assessing and understanding strengths and needs, avoiding inappropriate conclusions, considering treatment options and writing records and reports. Throughout, the authors emphasise that effectiveness depends on reflection, humanity and compassion.


1 Why Do People Seek Asylum? The Global Context

Rukyya Hassan

2 Life in the UK Asylum System

Jude Boyles, Robin Ewart-Biggs, Jonathan Kazembe, Jo Miller, and Karin Oliver

3 Seeking Asylum and Mental Health

Norma McKinnon and Chris Maloney

4 Access to Mental Health Care

Alison Summers, Norma McKinnon, and Jo Miller

5 Assessing Mental Health Needs

Julia Nelki and Piyal Sen

6 Interpreting Assessment Findings

Chris Maloney and Cornelius Katona

7 Formulation and Diagnosis

Alison Summers

8 Common Diagnoses

Piyal Sen, Alison Summers, and Chris Maloney

9 Intervention: The Essentials

Alison Summers and Chris Maloney

10 Specific Interventions

Piyal Sen, Grace Crowley, Chris Maloney, and Alison Summers

11 Children, Families and Young People

Veronika Dobler and Julia Nelki

12 Records and Reports

Janine Bonnet and Beate Dasarathy

13 Improving Mental Health Services

Alison Summers, Philomène Uwamaliya, Jude Boyles, and Helen Pears

14 Therapeutic Complexity

Renos Papadopoulos

15 Working with People Seeking Asylum

Chris Maloney, Julia Nelki, and Alison Summers

Buying the Book

Seeking Asylum and Mental Health can be bought direct from the publishers using this link

A 20% discount is available using the code SAMH2022

It is also available through Amazon.

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