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Nepal Earthquakes 2015: Desk Review of Existing Information with Relevance to Mental Health & Psychosocial Support

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Executive summary

Why was this desk review done? (Section 1.1)

This document describes a desk review started after the April 25 and May 12 earthquakes in Nepal. The main aim of the desk review was to summarize existing information with regard to mental health and psychosocial wellbeing in Nepal. It is hoped this desk review will help people responding to the earthquakes to take into account information on the socio-cultural context in Nepal, and to avoid collecting information in needs assessments that is already available. Conducting a desk review after major emergencies is part of the 2007 ‘Inter-Agency Standing Committee Guidelines for Mental Health and Psychosocial Support in Emergencies’.

How was the desk review done? (Section 1.2)

The desk review was undertaken by a group of more than one hundred collaborators working on behalf of the Inter-Agency Standing Committee for Mental Health and Psychosocial Support in Emergencies. Faculty and (post)graduate students at several universities used the same methods to search the academic and grey literature from multiple disciplines; screen the results from searches; and summarize relevant documents. A version for peer review was completed and shared on 22 May 2015 and a final version made available in early June.

What kind of information was available? (Section 1.2)

Searches identified 563 documents and 242 documents were included in writing this desk review. Documents included both information from (program) reports on websites as well as research published in peer-reviewed journals. The peer-reviewed literature on mental health and psychosocial wellbeing has focused primarily on mental health for populations affected by political violence in Nepal, including populations affected by armed conflict, torture survivors, and displaced populations (internally displaced populations, refugees from Tibet and Bhutan).