alexa Abstract | An exploration of the explanatory models of illness amongst Pushtuun families living in the UK who are high attenders in general practice

Diversity & Equality in Health and Care
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Abstract

This study explored the health beliefs and explanatory models of health illness in a Pakistani subpopulation known as the Pushtuuns,whowere high attenders at a UK general practitioner’s clinic. The study interviewed five families who were amongst the top 10 highest attenders at the practice. The interview involved an in-depth exploration of health beliefs using the Self Explanatory Model Inventory (SEMI); families were also screened for anxiety and depression symptoms. The study found that these families were living in poor adverse social conditions and all the high attenders, plus five other family members, were found to have high scores above the screening threshold for clinical depression. As well as attributing illness causation to biological and psychosocial causes, a strong divergent theme emerged in reporting by first-generation Pushtuuns who attributed illness causation to supernatural powers. Families also reported going abroad for treatment, and the main barrier in accessing services was reported as communication in the Pushtuun’s own language. It is concluded that a more patient-centred approach to primary healthcare is required, as well as culturally appropriate language and service provision to access mainstream secondary care services.

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Author(s): Qulsom Fazil Louise M Wallace Abid Hussain

 
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