The social determinants of health and health seeking behaviour in populations affected by armed conflict: a qualitative systematic review

Elsa Munezero, Sarkis Manoukian*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

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Abstract

This systematic review explored the relationship between the social determinants of health and health seeking behaviour of individuals affected by armed conflicts. A systematic search of all available evidence was conducted through well-known academic databases. Seven studies met the inclusion criteria and were quality assessed. The synthesis revealed that the social determinants of health in times of conflict also determine the level of health seeking in these individuals. The social determinants were grouped in three main themes a) individual and economic b) sociocultural c) political and health systems. The three themes show that armed conflicts affect health seeking behaviour of individuals in a multi-layered manner with strong connections across the social determinants. This review shows that individuals are forced to choose between fulfilling their basic needs and attending health services. This is further compounded by the lack of health provision in conflict settings. Future research must address the social determinants of health when examining health seeking behaviour of conflict affected populations.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)293-318
Number of pages26
JournalMedicine, Conflict and Survival
Volume37
Issue number4
Early online date20 Sep 2021
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2021

Keywords

  • qualitative research
  • systematic review
  • thematic analysis
  • armed conflict
  • social determinants of health
  • health seeking behaviour
  • health provision

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