Friday, 7 June 2013

Professor Jane Fisher secures funding to carry out research in rural Vietnam

Vietnam1The AusAID Women’s and Children’s Health Hub at the Burnet Institute has funded the Professor Jane Fisher at the Jean Hailes Research Unit in the School of Public Health and Preventive Medicine and the Research and Training Centre for Community Development in Hanoi to adapt the Thinking Healthy Program for Viet Nam.

The Thinking Healthy Program (Rahman et al, 2008) is a structured psychological intervention incorporating cognitive and behavioural techniques of active listening, problem-solving; non-threatening enquiry into a family’s health beliefs; challenging of inaccurate beliefs, and substitution of these with alternative information when required; and inter-session practice activities. It is designed for supervised community-based health workers in low-income settings to use in their regular practice with pregnant women and women who have recently given birth and is effective in reducing perinatal depression.

 As part of the program in Vietnam, Professor Fisher’s group will translate in to Vietnamese the program materials, which include an illustrated calendar and activity schedule for participants and a facilitator’s guide. A field test, with a group of pregnant women, facilitated by a member of the local Women’s Union will be conducted to assess comprehensibility, acceptability and salience of the Thinking Healthy Program in Ha Nam, a rural district in northern Vietnam. If successful, we will integrate the Program into a multi-component intervention to promote women’s health and optimize infant development in rural Vietnam.

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