Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people are three times more likely than non-Indigenous Australians to report vision loss due to cataracts, but are four times less likely to have cataract surgery.
To increase access for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people to cataract surgery, we need to identify the barriers to current services and trial strategies to overcome these barriers.
Barriers to cataract surgery exist at the health service, community and individual level.
Health service factors include infrastructure, cost, and provision of interpreters, escorts and transport.
Community factors include social support, perceptions about the success of surgery, and beliefs about the causes of cataracts.
Individual factors include ignorance that cataracts can be cured, fear of surgery or poor outcome, and comorbidity.
Strategies proven to increase uptake of cataract surgery in other countries could be trialled in remote Australia.
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