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Affordable care alone may not be enough to help Latinos overcome cancer care barriers
Date:3/5/2013

difficulty in accessing prescriptions. It ultimately led to increased out-of-pocket expenses and a fragmented system of care, leaving patients frustrated.

Lack of doctor continuity and care coordination

Participants frequently experienced poor care coordination, increased distrust for their doctors and decreased levels of comfort when care was administered disjointedly, by a frequently changing group of medical personnel.

Their frustration was exacerbated when they perceived faulty equipment and multiple doctor referrals as a cause for delayed diagnosis. Surgical procedures for prostate cancer and treatments for side effects were also frequently complicated by poor care coordination.

Inadequate access to primary care left many participants ill-equipped to navigate a complex medical system that often requires self-advocacy to demand the right care.

Communication and education

A lack of health literacy among the men, compounded by insufficient provider awareness of this issue, frequently resulted in the men misunderstanding doctors' treatment recommendations and procedures.

Patients' limited proficiency in English also often hampered their ability to describe their symptoms and express their needs to providers.

"Our study highlighted that we have an intricate web of barriers societal, system and individual that when combined leave many individuals without the care they should be receiving," Maliski said. "These overlapping obstacles make it clear we need a system where not only is care affordable but where we use a multi-faceted approach to improve access, increase health literacy and greatly improve care coordination."


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Contact: Laura Perry
lperry@sonnet.ucla.edu
310-794-4022
University of California - Los Angeles
Source:Eurekalert

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