The experience of the menopause and climacteric of women in Australia from a non-English speaking background

English, Carolyn J (1997) The experience of the menopause and climacteric of women in Australia from a non-English speaking background. Coursework Master thesis, Victoria University of Technology.

Abstract

Naturalistic inquiry was the method used in this qualitative study, examining the experience of the menopause and climacteric of women in Australia from a non-English speaking background. Women form over one-half of the Australian population, with 12% of this number being from a non-English speaking background country, and 14% of these women speaking a language other than English (LOTE) in the family home. These women seek health-care in a care system which was established and is maintained in the Anglo-Celtic tradition. As these women approach the menopause and the climacteric years, how culturally appropriate is our health-care service for these women? The study was conducted in the Western suburbs of Melbourne which has a higher percentage of people born overseas (34.6%) than the national or Victorian percentage of 22%. Data was collected by in-depth interviews with 33 women from the countries of Vietnam, the Philippines, China, Malta, Italy, Greece and Lebanon. Issues explored and contained in the data included the women's difficulties with their own health at the time of menopause, the significant beliefs and practices about menopause in their countries of origin, availability of culturally relevant information and treatment in the health care system. Findings included negative attitudes to menopause and usage of hormone replacement therapy, cultural overtones in the women's beliefs about menopause, religion being a determinant in acceptance and coping with menopause and the climacteric, inadequate information provided by health-care professionals, and the unavailibility of printed information in the appropriate language. The provision of Medicare was an important factor in the women's ability to access health care. As Australia is a multicultural country, it would appear from this study that the health-care system needs to address the issue of culturally congruent care.

Additional Information

Master of Health Science - Nursing

Item type Thesis (Coursework Master thesis)
URI http://vuir.vu.edu.au/id/eprint/33014
Subjects Current > FOR Classification > 1114 Paediatrics and Reproductive Medicine
Current > FOR Classification > 1117 Public Health and Health Services
Historical > Faculty/School/Research Centre/Department > School of Nursing and Midwifery
Keywords women immigrants, minority women, healthcare, nursing, multiculturalism, culture, experiences, aging, Melbourne
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