Mental health experts ask doctors to champion asylum seekers’ cause

DOCTORS need to raise awareness about the harmful health impacts of the detention of asylum seekers and migrants, Australian experts say.

Writing in PLoS Medicine, public health and mental health experts from the University of NSW said it was vital for health professionals to remain engaged in discussions about interception policies and advocate for less restrictive alternatives.

“Immigration detention provides a clear example of the intrinsic link between the denial of basic human rights and deterioration in health, and mental health in particular,” they wrote. 

PLoS Medicine 2011, online 14 June