The purpose of this paper is to synthesise data from the existent literature on the experiences of non-western older migrants in Europe in accessing and using healthcare services.
In total, 1,606 records were reviewed and 12 studies were selected. A thematic synthesis using Thomas and Harden’s approach was conducted.
The findings resulted in the three overarching themes: traditional discourses under new circumstances; predisposed vulnerabilities of older migrants and the healthcare system; and the conceptualization of health and the roles of healthcare professionals. The authors found that older migrants’ experience of accessing healthcare is influenced by many factors, such as health literacy, differences in healthcare beliefs and language barriers, and is not limited to cultural and traditional discourses of care. Findings reveal that there is a limited body of knowledge on barriers experienced by older migrant women.
The geographical scope of the study and subsequent type of healthcare systems should be taken into account while understanding barriers to care. Another limitation is that although we studied different migrant groups, the authors synthesised barriers experienced by all. Future research could study migrants as separate groups to better understand how previous experiences with healthcare in their home country and specific social, cultural and economic circumstances shape them.
This paper provides a synthesis of the experiences of migrants from non-western countries who moved to a host country with a very different language, culture and healthcare system.
The authors would like to thank the librarian Malene Wøhlk Gundersen from Oslo Metropolitan University, Norway for helping with the search strategy. This study was part of a PhD research project. The first author screened the articles. All authors read the screened articles and confirmed the findings. The first author was involved in drafting of the work. All authors were responsible for revising the work.
Availability of data and material: the full details of the search can be obtained from the authors.
Arora, S., Bergland, A., Straiton, M., Rechel, B. and Debesay, J. (2018), "Older migrants’ access to healthcare: a thematic synthesis", International Journal of Migration, Health and Social Care, Vol. 14 No. 4, pp. 425-438. https://doi.org/10.1108/IJMHSC-05-2018-0032Download as .RIS
Emerald Publishing Limited
Copyright © 2018, Emerald Publishing Limited