To explore access to health care for patients presenting with multiple chronic conditions and to identify barriers and factors conducive to access.
Qualitative study with focus groups.
Family practice unit in Chicoutimi (Saguenay), Que.
Twenty-five male and female adult patients with at least four chronic conditions but no cognitive disorders or decompensating conditions.
For this pilot study, only three focus group discussions were held.
The main barriers to accessing follow-up appointments included long waits on the telephone, automated telephone-answering systems, and needing to attend at specific times to obtain appointments. The main barriers to specialized care were long waiting times and the need to get prescriptions and referrals from family physicians. Factors reported conducive to access included systematic callbacks and the personal involvement of family physicians. Good communication between family physicians and specialists was also perceived to be an important factor in access.
Systematic callbacks, family physicians' personal efforts to obtain follow-up visits, and better physician-specialist communication were all suggested as ways to improve access to care for patients with multiple chronic conditions.
Despite experiencing a disproportionate burden of acute and chronic health issues, many homeless people face barriers to primary health care. Most studies on health care access among homeless populations have been conducted in the United States, and relatively few are available from countries such as Canada that have a system of universal health insurance. We investigated access to primary health care among a representative sample of homeless adults in Toronto, Canada.
Homeless adults were recruited from shelter and meal programs in downtown Toronto between November 2006 and February 2007. Cross-sectional data were collected on demographic characteristics, health status, health determinants and access to health care. We used multivariable logistic regression analysis to investigate the association between having a family doctor as the usual source of health care (an indicator of access to primary care) and health status, proof of health insurance, and substance use after adjustment for demographic characteristics.
Of the 366 participants included in our study, 156 (43%) reported having a family doctor. After adjustment for potential confounders and covariates, we found that the odds of having a family doctor significantly decreased with every additional year spent homeless in the participant's lifetime (adjusted odds ratio [OR] 0.91, 95% confidence interval [CI] 0.86-0.97). Having a family doctor was significantly associated with being lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgendered (adjusted OR 2.70, 95% CI 1.04-7.00), having a health card (proof of health insurance coverage in the province of Ontario) (adjusted OR 2.80, 95% CI 1.61-4.89) and having a chronic medical condition (adjusted OR 1.91, 95% CI 1.03-3.53).
Less than half of the homeless people in Toronto who participated in our study reported having a family doctor. Not having a family doctor was associated with key indicators of health care access and health status, including increasing duration of homelessness, lack of proof of health insurance coverage and having a chronic medical condition. Increased efforts are needed to address the barriers to appropriate health care and good health that persist in this population despite the provision of health insurance.
To explore the cancer information preferences of immigrant women by their level of acculturation we conducted interviews with 34 Spanish-speaking English-as-a-second-language (ESL) women. Chi-square and Fisher's exact tests were used to look for differences by acculturation. Four themes were identified: What is prevention? What should I do; sources of my cancer information, strategies I use to better understand, and identifying and closing my health knowledge gaps. Acculturation did not differentiate immigrant women's cancer information sources, preferences, or strategies used to address language barriers. We suggest the effect of acculturation is neither direct nor simple and may reflect other factors including self-efficacy.
The aim of this study was to assess the acceptability of human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) testing among migrants in Finland and the factors contributing to non-acceptance.
The Finnish Migrant Health and Wellbeing Study 'Maamu' was the first national population-based Health Interview and Examination Survey (HIS/HES) among migrants in Finland. A total of 386 Kurdish, Russian and Somali immigrants in Helsinki participated in the study.
Despite the participants' different sociodemographic backgrounds, a high rate of test acceptability (92%, 95% CI 90-95) was achieved. HIV test acceptance was associated with pretest counselling, ability to understand spoken Finnish or Swedish and employment status. No participants tested positive for HIV.
The results imply that a universal HIV testing strategy is well accepted in a low-HIV prevalence immigrant population and can be included in a general health examination in immigrant population-based surveys.
Arabic-speaking migrants have constituted a growing population in recent years. This entails major challenges to ensure good communication in the healthcare encounter in order to provide individual and holistic healthcare. One of the solutions to ensure good communication between patient and healthcare staff who do not share the same language is to use a professional interpreter. To our knowledge, no previous qualitative studies have been found concerning Arabic-speaking migrants and the use of interpreters. This study aims to ascertain their individual experiences which can help extend our understanding of the studied area.
A purposive sample of 13 Arabic-speaking persons with experience of using interpreters in healthcare encounters. Data were collected between November 2012 and March 2013 by four focus-group interviews and analysed with qualitative analysis according to a method described for focus groups.
Four categories appeared from the analysis: 1) The professional interpreter as spokesperson; 2) Different types of interpreters and modes of interpretation adapting to the healthcare encounter; 3) The professional interpreter's task and personal properties affected the use of professional interpreters in a healthcare encounter; 4) Future planning of the use of professional interpreters in a healthcare encounter. The main findings were that the use of interpreters was experienced both as a possibility and as a problem. The preferred type of interpreters depended on the interpreter's dialect and ability to interpret correctly. Besides the professional interpreter's qualities of good skill in language and medical terminology, translation ability, neutrality and objectivity, Arabic-speaking participants stated that professional interpreters need to share the same origin, religion, dialect, gender and political views as the patient in order to facilitate the interpreter use and avoid inappropriate treatment.
The study showed that the personal qualities of a good interpreter not only cover language ability but also origin, religion, dialect, gender and political views. Thus, there is need to develop strategies for personalized healthcare in order to avoid inappropriate communication, to satisfy the preferences of the person in need of interpreters and improve the impact of interpretation on the quality of healthcare.
Cites: J Gen Intern Med. 1999 Sep;14(9):547-5010491243
Research Scientist, Manitoba Centre for Health Policy, Department of Community Health Sciences, Faculty of Medicine, University of Manitoba, Winnipeg, Manitoba; Assistant Professor, Department of Community Health Sciences, Faculty of Medicine, University of Manitoba, Winnipeg, Manitoba.
Francophones may experience poorer health due to social status, cultural differences in lifestyle and attitudes, and language barriers to health care. Our study sought to compare mental health indicators between Francophones and non-Francophones living in the province of Manitoba.
Two populations were used: one from administrative datasets housed at the Manitoba Centre for Health Policy and the other from representative survey samples. The administrative datasets contained data from physician billings, hospitalizations, prescription drug use, education, and social services use, and surveys included indicators on language variables and on self-rated health.
Outside urban areas, Francophones had lower rates of diagnosed substance use disorder (rate ratio [RR] = 0.80; 95% CI 0.68 to 0.95) and of suicide and suicide attempts (RR = 0.59; 95% CI 0.43 to 0.79), compared with non-Francophones, but no differences were found between the groups across the province in rates of diagnosed mood disorders, anxiety disorders, dementia, or any mental disorders after adjusting for age, sex, and geographic area. When surveyed, Francophones were less likely than non-Francophones to report that their mental health was excellent, very good, or good (66.9%, compared with 74.2%).
The discrepancy in how Francophones view their mental health and their rates of diagnosed mental disorders may be related to health seeking behaviours in the Francophone population. Community and government agencies should try to improve the mental health of this population through mental health promotion and by addressing language and cultural barriers to health services.
This paper focuses on the work involved for service users in arranging and negotiating the use of informal interpreters from their social networks for general practice consultations. The data are drawn from a participatory learning and action research study, carried out in the west of Ireland. Qualitative data were gathered using a peer researcher model from a 'hard to reach' community of Serbo-Croat and Russian refugees and asylum seekers (n=26). The findings elucidate that there is a tension for service users between the experienced benefits of having a trusted friend/family member present to act as their interpreter and the burden of work and responsibility to manage the language barrier. Participants emphasize that, for them, the use of informal interpreters can be inadequate and problematic and can leave them worried, frustrated and with experiences of error and misdiagnosis. Overall, they state a clear preference for the use of professional, trained interpreters in general practice consultations which is currently unavailable to them in routine Irish general practice consultations.
This study identified previously reported facilitators and barriers to pharmacist-client communication and then evaluated their impact on the observed communication behaviors of pharmacists. Pharmacists (n = 100) completed a seven-page questionnaire collecting information on 11 variables that had been organized according to the Policy, Regulatory and Organizational Constructs in Educational and Ecological Development (PROCEDE) model as predisposing, enabling, or reinforcing of pharmacist communication with their clients. Demographic variables also were included. "Communication quality" served as the study's dependent variable, whereas pharmacist responses served as the independent variables. Communication quality scores for each pharmacist were obtained from the analysis of 765 audiorecordings of verbal exchanges occurring between the study pharmacists and their consenting clients during 4-hour, on-site observation periods. Four of the variables examined in the study were found to share a unique relationship with communication quality (pharmacists' attitude, year of graduation, adherence expectations, and outcome expectations). Hierarchical multiple regression analysis revealed that the variables measured in the questionnaire accounted for 23% of the variance in communication quality scores. Plausible explanations for why the study was unable to capture more of the variance in its proposed relationships and future areas for research are provided.
To explore oncologists' psychosocial attitudes and beliefs and their perceptions regarding barriers against psychosocial communication.
A questionnaire was distributed to oncologists in Sweden (n = 537). Questions covered demography, the Physician Psychosocial Beliefs Scale (PPBS), and barriers against psychosocial communication. Stepwise multiple regression was used to determine what factors contribute the most to the PPBS score and the total number of barriers and barriers affecting clinical practice, respectively. Spearman rank-order correlation was used to determine correlation between PPBS score and number of barriers.
Questionnaire response rate was 64%. Mean PPBS value was 85.5 (range, 49 to 123; SD, 13.0). Most oncologists (93%) perceived one or more barriers in communicating psychosocial aspects with patients. On average, five different communication barriers were perceived, of which most were perceived to affect clinical practice. These barriers included insufficient consultation time, lack of resources for taking care of problems discovered, and lack of methods to evaluate patients' psychosocial health in clinical practice. There was a positive correlation (rs = 0.490; P
The aim was to identify the factors that were perceived as most important as facilitators or barriers to the introduction and intended use of a new tool in the emergency department among nurses and a geriatric team.
A high incidence of functional decline after hospitalisation for acute medical illness has been shown in the oldest patients and those who are physically frail. In Denmark, more than 35% of older medical patients acutely admitted to the emergency department are readmitted within 90 days after discharge. A new screening tool for use in the emergency department aiming to identify patients at particularly high risk of functional decline and readmission was developed.
Qualitative study based on semistructured interviews with nurses and a geriatric team in the emergency department and semistructured single interviews with their managers.
The Theoretical Domains Framework guided data collection and analysis. Content analysis was performed whereby new themes and themes already existing within each domain were described.
Six predominant domains were identified: (1) professional role and identity; (2) beliefs about consequences; (3) goals; (4) knowledge; (5) optimism and (6) environmental context and resources. The content analysis identified three themes, each containing two subthemes. The themes were professional role and identity, beliefs about consequences and preconditions for a successful implementation.
Two different cultures were identified in the emergency department. These cultures applied to different professional roles and identity, different actions and sense making and identified how barriers and facilitators linked to the new screening tool were perceived.
The results show that different cultures exist in the same local context and influence the perception of barriers and facilitators differently. These cultures must be identified and addressed when implementation is planned.