This paper explored individual- and system-level factors affecting the provision of care services for rural patients. An integrated literature review across four databases identified 22 studies from six countries. A focus on health and wellbeing and the influence of rurality was explored. Findings indicate physical and functional health in rural cancer patients is lower in comparison with urban areas. Influencing factors were socio-economic status, age, income, health literacy, control and self-efficacy. Enhancing the strengths and education of caregivers and their inclusion in service decision-making are paramount for rural cancer patients and for the wellbeing of the caregivers. Disparities in rural areas need to be explored with longitudinal research to understand the clinical, social and cultural characteristics in relation to remoteness. The use of innovative technologies has been recommended as an option to enhance the health access and enable quality care provision across rural areas.
Background The use of breast cancer screening mammogram is proven to be beneficial for the early detection and prevention of breast cancer. Despite the free availability of this service in Australia, it has not been fully used by many migrants and refugee women.
Objective To explore the perception and perceived barriers of Bhutanese refugee women to the access and use of breast-screening service.
Methods We used qualitative methods with an in-depth interview and Interpretative Phenomenological Analysis (IPA).
Results Our findings suggest that there is a low level of screening services use among Bhutanese refugee women. From the interpretative phenomenological analysis of the interview data, four main themes were apparent as barriers to accessing breast cancer screening: lack of knowledge about the importance of the screening; lack of motivational factors; problem-triggered health seeking behaviour due to strong cultural factors; and communication difficulties due to poor literacy and limited English language proficiency — all have contributed to low-level use of breast-screening mammograms.
Conclusion Older Bhutanese refugee women resettled in Australia did not seek preventive screening without symptoms or their doctor’s advice. Women in this study followed their doctor’s lead. Recommendations for screening and follow-up from their doctor were followed, and lack of advice from them was interpreted by the women that no action was required.
Background A cross-sectional medical record audit and self-report questionnaire study of a rural supportive care cancer program found that when compared with women, men were more likely to be older; perceive health care information to be unhelpful; receive fewer referrals to services; were reluctant to join support groups and experienced a poorer quality of life.
Aim The aim was to explore unmet supportive care needs of rural men with cancer to inform improvements in service delivery.
Method Twenty-two men were invited to attend a focus group. The focus group was audio-recorded, transcribed verbatim and field notes were taken. Data were analysed thematically.
Results Ten men participated. Six key themes describe how these rural men perceive deficits in the cancer care support.
Conclusion There are unmet supportive care needs experienced by rural men with cancer. Gender-informed support is important when individualising care for men.