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Soc Work Health Care. 2002;35(1-2):523-43.

Cross cultural research in palliative care.

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James Cook University, Townsville, Australia.


Hospices within Australia, such as the Sacred Heart Hospice (SHH) at Darlinghurst, have over many years proven to be highly successful in meeting the needs of persons who require palliative care and addressing the concerns raised by their families. However, health professionals have increasingly recognised that caring for persons who are from a Non-English Speaking Background (NESB) and for their families requires giving them special consideration because of their different cultural needs. This project involved reviewing all inpatient files of the SHH over a three year period (1 October 1994 to 30 September 1997) and quantitatively reviewing all inpatient files of NESB inpatients during this period. Following this review, the researchers coordinated a focus group that comprised various health professionals from SHH and other health and community services and representatives of four non-English speaking countries--Greece, Italy, the former USSR, and China. These countries had the highest representation of inpatients during the three-year term covered by the research project. The project identified a number of specific strategies aimed at providing a more culturally sensitive health care service to NESB inpatients.

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