Honoring the Voices of Hispanic/Latino(a)/Latinx Patients with Rheumatoid Arthritis
Creakyjoints.org reports on a new HSS study underscoring the importance of the patient perspective in research, education, diagnosis of rheumatoid arthritis (RA).
The voices of patients matter in the creation of programs, services, and health care delivery — yet are often unheard or misunderstood, especially when language and cultural barriers exist.
“We know from the literature and clinical experience that there are significant disparities in outcomes for Latinx rheumatoid arthritis [RA] patients,” said study author Anna Balakrishnan, LMSW, social work researcher in the Inflammatory Arthritis Support and Education Programs, at HSS. Delays in receiving a diagnosis from a rheumatologist combined with communication gaps as well as cultural lens contribute to Hispanic/Latino(a)/Latinx patients with RA experiencing increased pain, fatigue, disability, and depression.
Balakrishnan and her colleague Adena Batterman, LCSW, senior manager, Inflammatory Arthritis Support and Education Programs and Patient-Centered Qualitative Research at HSS, along with researchers from the Global Healthy Living Foundation, set out to take a closer look at these communication barriers and better understand the unique education and support needs of Hispanic/Latino(a)/Latinx patients with RA.
“Patients benefit when providers customize care for their patients based on their needs,” says Balakrishnan. “We hope that the information learned through this study can help providers approach care in culturally tailored ways.”
“Extensive research supports the need to include patients and patient input in the development of these types of programs early in the process,” says Batterman. “This study is an effort to incorporate and honor patient voices to inform all stages of this program’s development.”
“Patients benefit when providers customize care for their patients based on their needs,” said Balakrishnan. “We hope that the information learned through this study can help providers approach care in culturally tailored ways.”
Read the full article: creakyjoints.org