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Qualitative Health Research
The factors driving the disparity in health outcomes between Indigenous and non-Indigenous Australians include socio-economic factors, racism, and history. The current study focused on exploring Indigenous participants’ perspectives of the factors that affect the health behavior of their community members. Participatory action research methodology and a grounded theory approach were utilized. In total, 120 members of two urban West Australian Indigenous communities participated in focus group discussions. There was substantial similarity between the themes that emerged within the discussions held in the two communities. Factors relating to culture, social connections, racism, communication, and personal aspects were particularly salient to health behavior of the participants. Several of the themes including culture, racism, communication, and distrust highlight the tension caused by being a member of a minority cultural group that has been marginalized by the practices and attitudes of the dominant cultural group. Personal choice was sometimes prioritized over health.
Waterworth, P., James Dimmock, Melanie Pescud, Rebecca Braham and Michael Rosenberg, (2015) ‘Factors affecting Indigenous West Australians’ health behavior: Indigenous perspectives’, Qualitative Health Research, 1-14.