The double hazard in recovery journey : The experiences of UK Chinese users of mental health services

Lynn TANG*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Journal PublicationsJournal Article (refereed)peer-review

3 Citations (Scopus)


Background: The recent interest in recovery from mental health problems has not meaningfully addressed the perspectives of ethnic minorities. Aim: To contribute to the discussion of recovery-oriented service with a study on the experience of Chinese people using UK mental health services. Methods: In-depth life history interviews were carried out with the users. The qualitative data were analysed using thematic analysis. Results: Four themes emerged as hindrances to personal recovery: (1) language difficulty creates hurdles, (2) diagnostic label is experienced as a double-edged sword, (3) treatment-related stigma and (dis)empowerment are identified, and (4) grievances are found in hospitalisation. Discussion: Having mental illness and being an ethnic minority in the UK experienced double hazard in their recovery journey. While the deprivation of agency and the stigma process in the health care system hinders their recovery, they are further disadvantaged by their ethnic minority status. Four pointers for service improvement, that apply to Chinese users in the United Kingdom and have general implications for users beyond this group, are proposed.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)271-278
Number of pages8
JournalInternational Journal of Social Psychiatry
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jun 2019
Externally publishedYes


  • ethnic minorities
  • mental health service
  • qualitative
  • recovery
  • stigma
  • UK Chinese


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