Date of Conferral

2017

Degree

Doctor of Public Health (DrPH)

School

Public Health

Advisor

Vasileios Margaritis,

Abstract

Immigration may be an effective survival strategy for individuals from countries involved in war or political unrest.However, the immigration process may exacerbate a number of physical and psychological health symptoms. There are limited data on the health status of new Canadian immigrants, and some social support networks are not formally connected to settlement programs.The purpose of this cross-sectional quantitative study was to assess the level of stress and self-esteem of 400 recent and older immigrants in Canada, and to investigate the impact of social support networks on the mental well-being of recent immigrants.Cultural care and general adaptation theory provided the theoretical frameworks for the study. Results from logistic regression analyses indicated that there were no significant differences in stress and self-esteem levels between recent and non recent immigrants. Results also indicated marginal significance for new immigrants with Hispanic ethnicity, who had lower stress scores than African immigrants (OR:0.196, 95%CI: 0.034-1.150, p<0.071). Afro-Caribbean recent immigrants had4.36 odds of having low self-esteem compared to African recent immigrants (OR:4.36, 95%CI: 1.113-17.078, p<0.05). Implications for social change include providing information to immigration and public health authorities on factors affecting stress and self-esteem of immigrants to promote the best possible integration outcomes.