Death and dying in Australia: perceptions of a Sudanese community

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The aims of this study were to obtain information to support Palliative Care healthcare workers to meet the needs of the Sudanese population in death, dying, and bereavement.


Australia is a multicultural society and healthcare workers are faced with increasing numbers and diversity of immigrants to whom healthcare professionals strive to provide quality health care.


A qualitative interpretive approach was used with data collected from a sample of 15 participants during focus group discussions. Data were collected in 2008–2009, transcribed and analysed.


The main themes and ideas identified in the dialogues were analysed under five main headings – Communication issues including disclosure and consent; Concepts of disease and illness; Attitudes towards medical treatments; Customs surrounding death, dying and bereavement; and Spiritual and religious issues.


The cultures and traditions of African countries vary widely; this study provides a snapshot of the views of a Sudanese African community about death and dying in Australia.

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