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Learning from the experiences of Hmong mental health providers

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Author(s): Linda Gensheimer

Journal: Hmong Studies Journal
ISSN 1091-1774

Volume: 7;
Issue: 1;
Start page: 1;
Date: 2007;
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Keywords: Hmong Americans | Asian American Studies | Mental Health

ABSTRACT
This article is a condensed version of a doctoral dissertation studying Hmong mental health providers. The central research question for this study was: What is the meaning of being a Hmong mental health provider? 11 Hmong mental health providers were interviewed about their experiences. Interviewees were asked to describe specificexperiences while doing this work. Interviews were audio taped and transcribed into text narratives. The methodology for conducting this research and analyzing the text was derived from the field of hermeneutic phenomenology. Five major themes emerged: (a)The clash; (b) I call him uncle; (c) Deciphering the code through Hmong embeddedness; (d) Tshuaj vwm (crazy drugs); and (e) In my heart I can see that it happened that way. Practical implications for educators and those working in the field of mental health arepresented.

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