Asthma Prevention and Management for Aboriginal People: Lessons From Mi’kmaq Communities, Unama’ki, Canada, 2012
Published Date:Jan 14 2016
Source:Prev Chronic Dis. 13.
Corporate Authors:Tui’kn Partnership
Pubmed Central ID:PMC4714941
Asthma affects at least 10% of Aboriginal children (aged 11 or younger) in Canada, making it the second most common chronic disease suffered by this demographic group; yet asthma support strategies specific to Aboriginal peoples have only begun to be identified.
This research builds on earlier phases of a recent study focused on identifying the support needs and intervention preferences of Aboriginal children with asthma and their parents or caregivers. Here, we seek to identify the implications of our initial findings for asthma programs, policies, and practices in an Aboriginal context and to determine strategies for implementing prevention programs in Aboriginal communities.
Five focus groups were conducted with 22 recruited community health care professionals and school personnel in 5 Mi’kmaq communities in Unama’ki (Cape Breton), Nova Scotia, Canada, through a community-based participatory research design. Each focus group was first introduced to findings from a local “social support for asthma” intervention, and then the groups explored issues associated with implementing social support from their respective professional positions.
Thematic analysis revealed 3 key areas of opportunity and challenges for implementing asthma prevention and management initiatives in Mi’kmaq communities in terms of 1) professional awareness, 2) local school issues, and 3) community health centers.
Culturally relevant support initiatives are feasible and effective community-driven ways of improving asthma support in Mi’kmaq communities; however, ongoing assistance from the local leadership (ie, chief and council), community health directors, and school administrators, in addition to partnerships with respiratory health service organizations, is needed.
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