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Diabetes care and service access among elderly Vietnamese with type 2 diabetes

TitleDiabetes care and service access among elderly Vietnamese with type 2 diabetes
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2013
AuthorsCarolan-Olah, MC, Cassar, A, Quiazon, R, Lynch, S
JournalBMC Health Serv ResBMC Health Serv Res
Volume13
Pagination447
ISBN Number1472-6963 (Electronic)<br/>1472-6963 (Linking)
Accession Number24168109
KeywordsAged, Australia, Diabetes Mellitus, Type 2/ethnology/psychology/ therapy, Female, Focus Groups, Health Behavior/ethnology, Health Services Accessibility, Humans, Male, Middle Aged, Motivation, Vietnam/ethnology
AbstractBACKGROUND: Vietnamese patients are disproportionately represented in type 2 diabetes mellitus statistics and also incur high rates of diabetes complications. This situation is compounded by limited access to health care. The aim of this project was to gain a deeper understanding of the difficulties Vietnamese patients experience when accessing services and managing their type 2 diabetes mellitus, and to identify factors that are important in promoting health service use. METHODS: Three focus groups with 15 Vietnamese participants with type 2 diabetes mellitus, 60 to >70 years of age, were conducted in Vietnamese. Open-ended questions were used and focussed on experiences of living with diabetes and access to healthcare services in the Inner Northwest Melbourne region. Audio recordings were transcribed and then translated into English. Data were analysed using a thematic analysis framework. RESULTS: Findings indicate four main themes, which together provide some insight into the experiences of living with diabetes and accessing ongoing care and support, for elderly Vietnamese with type 2 diabetes. Themes included: (1) the value of being healthy; (2) controlling diabetes; (3) staying healthy; and (4) improving services and information access. CONCLUSIONS: Participants in this study were encouraged to adhere to diabetes self-management principles, based largely on a fear of medical complications. Important aspects of healthcare access were identified as; being treated with respect, having their questions answered and having access to interpreters and information in Vietnamese. Attention to these details is likely to lead to improved access to healthcare services and ultimately to improve glycemic control and overall health status for this community.