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Gaceta Sanitaria

versão impressa ISSN 0213-9111

Resumo

BAS-SARMIENTO, Pilar; FERNANDEZ-GUTIERREZ, Martina; ALBAR-MARIN, M.ª Jesús  e  GARCIA-RAMIREZ, Manuel. Perceptions and experiences of access to health services and their utilization among the immigrant population. Gac Sanit [online]. 2015, vol.29, n.4, pp.244-251. ISSN 0213-9111.  http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.gaceta.2015.03.008.

Objective: To identify and describe the needs and problems of the immigrant population related to access and utilization of health services. Method: A descriptive, qualitative, phenomenological study was conducted using focus groups. The study area was the county of Campo de Gibraltar (Spain), which represents the gateway to Europe for immigration from Africa. The final sample size (51 immigrants from 11 countries) was determined by theoretical saturation. A narrative analysis was conducted with QSR NVivo9 software. Results: Immigrants' discourse showed four categories of analysis: response to a health problem, system access, knowledge of social and health resources, and health literacy needs. Responses to health problems and the route of access to the health care system differed according to some sociodemographic characteristics (nationality/culture of origin, length of residence, and economic status). In general, immigrants primarily used emergency services, hampering health promotion and prevention. The health literacy needs identified concerned language proficiency and the functioning of the health system. Conclusions: There is a need to promote interventions to enhance health literacy among immigrants. These interventions should take into account diversity and length of residence, and should be based on an action-participation methodology.

Palavras-chave : Immigration; Health service accessibility; Qualitative research; Health literacy; Health promotion; Cultural diversity; Patient participation; Healthcare disparities.

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