Background: In the context of an effective consumer engagement framework, there is potential for health‐care delivery to be safer. Consumers from culturally and linguistically diverse (CALD) backgrounds may experience several barriers when trying to engage about their health care, and they are not acknowledged sufficiently in contemporary strategies to facilitate patient engagement.
Methods: Four focus group discussions were facilitated by bilingual fieldworkers in Arabic, Mandarin, Turkish and Dari in a district of Sydney, Australia that has a high proportion of CALD consumers. Each group included 5‐7 health‐care consumers who, using a topic guide, discussed their experiences of barriers and facilitators when engaging with health‐care services in Australia. Thematic analysis was undertaken to identify, analyse and report patterns in the data.
Results: In all, 24 consumers participated. Six inter‐related themes emerged: navigating the health system; seeking meaningful interpretation; understanding and managing expectations; respectful professional care; accessing services; and feeling unsafe.
Conclusions: The incorporation of strategies such as professional interpreters and migrant health workers may go some way to addressing the needs of culturally or linguistically diverse consumers and facilitate communication, but do not sufficiently address the range of barriers to consumer engagement identified in this work. Understanding consumer experience in the context of the complex factors that may be associated with poor engagement and poor outcomes such as health literacy, cultural, educational and linguistic background, and health‐care setting or condition, may contribute to better understanding about how to deliver quality health care to these patients.
Mental health related stigma, within widespread discrimination and exclusion, inhibits many from seeking help. Moreover, conventional therapeutic methods relying on the spoken word only may not elucidate the full range and nuances of lived experiences. The use of photography alongside narratives (photovoice) can provide a powerful means for ethnic minority service users and their carers to communicate these experiences, with photographic displays to a broader audience contributing towards destigmatising mental illness.
The Framework for Mental Health in Multicultural Australia (the Framework) is a free, nationally available online resource which allows organisations and individual practitioners to evaluate and enhance their cultural responsiveness. It is mapped against national standards to help organisations meet their existing requirements, and provides free access to a wide range of support and resources.
Background: Engagement frameworks provide the conceptual structure for consumer engagement in healthcare decision making, but the level to which these frameworks support culturally and linguistically diverse (CALD) consumer engagement is not known.
Objective: This study aimed to investigate how consumer engagement is conceptualised and operationalized and to determine the implications of current consumer engagement frameworks for engagement with CALD consumers.
Method: Altheide's document analysis approach was used to guide a systematic search, selection and analytic process. Australian Government health department websites were searched for eligible publicly available engagement frameworks. A narrative synthesis was conducted. Results: Eleven engagement frameworks published between 2007 and 2019 were identified and analysed. Only four frameworks discussed engagement with CALD consumers distinctly. Organisational prerequisites to enhance engagement opportunities and approaches to enable activities of engagement were highlighted to improve CALD consumers' active participation in decision making; however, these largely focused on language, with limited exploration of culturally sensitive services.
Conclusion: There is limited discussion of what culturally sensitive services look like and what resources are needed to enhance CALD consumer engagement in high‐ level decision making. Health services and policy makers can enhance opportunities for engagement with CALD consumers by being flexible in their approach, implementing policies for reimbursement for participation and evaluating and adapting the activities of engagement in collaboration with CALD consumers. Patient/Public Contribution: This study is part of a wider ‘CanEngage’ project, which includes a consumer investigator, and is supported by a consumer advisory group. The study was conceived with inputs from the consumer advisory group.
Refugees are disproportionally impacted by trauma and its negative sequelae. Even after being resettled in the United States, refugees face disparities in accessing services due to the stigma attached to mental health symptoms and the paucity of culturally and linguistically accessible services. Thus, there is a great need to develop methods that facilitate the engagement of refugee communities.
Community-Based Participatory Research recommends the forming of equal and equitable partnerships with communities and stakeholders to enhance community capacity and ownership of the research process and outcomes (Israel et al., 1998). The present article shares one approach to operationalizing these principles with the Somali refugee community. It provides a road map of best practices in collaborating with communities and the importance of colearning and cultural humility to a successful partnership.
The National Mental Health Consumer and Carer Forum and the National Primary Health Network Mental Health Lived Experience Engagement Network acknowledge the Traditional Custodians of the lands and waters on which we work and live on across Australia. We recognise their continuing connection to land, waters, culture and community. We pay our respects to Elders past and present.
“A lived experience recognises the effects of ongoing negative historical impacts and or specific events on the social and emotional wellbeing of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples. It encompasses the cultural, spiritual, physical, emotional and mental wellbeing of the individual, family or community.
“People with lived or living experience of suicide are those who have experienced suicidal thoughts, survived a suicide attempt, cared for someone through a suicidal crisis, been bereaved by suicide or having a loved one who has died by suicide, acknowledging that this experience is significantly different and takes into consideration Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples ways of understanding social and emotional wellbeing.” - Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Lived Experience Centre
We welcome Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people to this site and invite them to provide any feedback or items for inclusion.
We also recognise people with lived and living experience of mental ill-health and recovery and the experience of people who are carers, families, kin, or supporters.