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Enid Schatz – “They “don’t cure old age”: Older Ugandans’ delays to health care access”
March 16, 2017 @ 12:30 pm - 1:30 pm
Enid Schatz, University of Missouri
Uganda’s population is ageing, which comes with increasing and varied burdens of disease and health care needs. At the same time, gerontological care remains neglected. For policy makers to improve older Ugandans’ health and wellbeing, it is crucial to first understand the barriers to older Ugandans’ health care utilization. We conduct a thematic analysis of data drawn from nine focus groups that were held with rural Ugandans aged 60-plus. Our analysis highlights how older persons’ barriers to health care align with the Three-Delay Model to health care access, which was developed to improve obstetric care in low-resource settings. Our participants report delays in (I) health seeking related to mobility limitations and disease etiology, stigma, and severity; (II) reaching care because of poor infrastructure and transportation options; and (III) receiving appropriate care because of ageism and because facilities are poorly staffed and undersupplied. Despite overlap and connection among these delays, care-seeking delays occur primarily at the individual level, delays in reaching care occur primarily at the community level, and delays in receiving appropriate care occur primarily at the health-system level. Thus, we argue that multipronged interventions are needed to improve older Africans’ access to care and ultimately their health and wellbeing.
Enid Schatz specializes in Social Demography with a particular focus on gender, aging and AIDS in southern Africa, integrating qualitative and quantitative methodologies in both data collection and analysis, specifically data-linked nested studies, which make use of census or survey lists to select semi-structured interview respondents for more in depth studies. Enid has extensive fieldwork experience in Malawi, Kenya and South Africa. Enid's past work focused on gender and reproductive health. More recently, her work has explored the intersections between gender, AIDS, and aging by examining issues related to caregiving, pension use, and defining health and wellbeing.