Meeting Social and Cultural Needs During an Emergency

Katharine McBride, Herbert Mack, Gloria Mejia, Philip Tideman, Nola Whyman, Major Sumner, Janice Rigney, Kim Morey

Research output: Contribution to conferenceAbstractpeer-review


Social and cultural barriers to care impact the journey to acute treatments for Aboriginal patients with chest pain and suspected acute coronary syndrome or neurological symptoms and suspected stroke. There is a recognised need to improve the quality of, and accessibility to, transfer and retrieval practices for these patients. Such actions improve the whole patient journey. The aim was to integrate supports to meet the cultural and social needs of Aboriginal patients into clinical pathways and procedures of emergency services.
A team of clinicians, clinical and Aboriginal health managers and Aboriginal community members with lived experience of heart disease and stroke identified key aspects of the emergency journey which could be addressed to improve the patient and family experience and clinical procedures. The results of qualitative and quantitative studies on the experience of emergency journeys informed the process. A protocol outlining elements of care for health professionals to provide was developed. Consultation was undertaken with clinicians and health system managers to identify the approaches to implementation within existing procedures and systems.
Twelve elements of social and cultural support were identified. A protocol was developed for integration into clinical procedures. A plan for implementation was developed with each agency. Process and outcome key performance indicators were established to measure impact.
It is critical that high-quality cultural and clinical care is provided throughout a cardiac or stroke emergency journey. The protocol has now been integrated into cardiac and stroke clinical pathways, and measurement of process and outcome indicators underway.
Original languageEnglish
Number of pages1
Publication statusPublished or Issued - 1 Jan 2019

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