Reflecting on the tensions faced by a community-based multicultural health navigator service
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The community navigator model was developed to assist four culturally and linguistically diverse communities (Sudanese, Burmese, Pacific Islander Group, Afghani) in south-east Queensland to negotiate the Australian health system and promote health. Using participatory action research, we developed the model in partnership with community leaders and members, the local health department and two non-governmental organisations. Following implementation, we evaluated the model, with the results published elsewhere. However, our evaluation revealed that although the model was accepted by the communities and was associated with positive health outcomes, the financial, social and organisational durability of the model was problematic. Ironically, this situation was inadvertently created by critical decisions made during the development process to enhance the durability and acceptability of the model. This paper explores these critical decisions, our rationale for making those decisions and the four hidden tensions that subsequently emerged. Using a reflective case study method to guide our analysis, we provide possible resolutions to these tensions that may promote the longevity and utility of similar models in the future.
Australian Health Review
© 2014 AHHA. This is the author-manuscript version of this paper. Reproduced in accordance with the copyright policy of the publisher. Please refer to the journal's website for access to the definitive, published version.
Studies in Human Society not elsewhere classified