Perceived Barriers to Managing Medications and Solutions to Barriers Suggested by Bhutanese Former Refugees and Service Providers

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Abstract

Introduction: The purpose of this study was to explore perceived barriers to managing medications and potential solutions to such barriers among Bhutanese former refugees and service providers in Tasmania, Australia. Method: Thirty Bhutanese former refugees and service providers recruited through community health programs participated in a community-based participatory research design. Data were elicited through a structured focus group process and analyzed using content analysis. Results: Perceived barriers to managing medications included language barriers, low health literacy, and culturally unresponsive interactions with services. Themes identifying potential solutions to barriers referred to the functional health literacy of individuals (providing reassurance, checking understanding, and involving support networks) and creating supportive health care environments (consistent service providers, culturally responsive care, assistance navigating services, using trained interpreters). Discussion: Creating environments conducive to interactive and critical health literacy about medications is as important for culturally congruent care as supporting the functional health literacy of individuals.

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