“You’re always hearing about the stats ... death happens so often”: new perspectives on barriers to Aboriginal participation in cardiac rehabilitation

Kate P Taylor, Julie S Smith, Lyn Dimer, Mohammed Ali, Narelle Wilson, Tyra R Thomas and Sandra C Thompson
Med J Aust 2010; 192 (10): 602.

To the Editor: Engaging patients in cardiac rehabilitation (CR), a program of secondary prevention measures, is crucial to improving outcomes after myocardial infarct.1 Rates of participation in CR by Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander (hereafter Aboriginal) people are extremely low.2,3

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  • Kate P Taylor1
  • Julie S Smith2,3
  • Lyn Dimer3
  • Mohammed Ali1
  • Narelle Wilson2,3
  • Tyra R Thomas3
  • Sandra C Thompson1,4

  • 1 Curtin Health Innovation Research Institute, Curtin University, Perth, WA.
  • 2 Royal Perth Hospital, Perth, WA.
  • 3 Heart Foundation of Western Australia, Perth, WA.
  • 4 Combined Universities Centre for Rural Health, University of Western Australia, Geraldton, WA.



Acknowledgement: This study was funded by the WA Department of Health through the State Health Research Advisory Council.

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  • 3. Scott IA, Lindsay KA, Harden HE. Utilisation of outpatient cardiac rehabilitation in Queensland. Med J Aust 2003; 179: 341-345. <MJA full text>
  • 4. De Angelis C, Bunker S, Schoo A. Exploring the barriers and enablers to attendance at rural cardiac rehabilitation programs. Aust J Rural Health 2008; 16: 137-142.
  • 5. Scrimgeour M, Scrimgeour D. Health care access for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people living in urban areas, and related research issues: a review of the literature. Discussion paper series no. 5. Darwin: Cooperative Research Centre for Aboriginal Health, 2008.
  • 6. Brough M. A lost cause? Representations of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander health in Australian newspapers. Aust J Comm 1999; 26: 87-96.
  • 7. Brown A, Warren W, Lea T, Tonkin A. What becomes of the broken hearted? Coronary heart disease as a paradigm of cardiovascular disease and poor health among Indigenous Australians. Heart Lung Circ 2005; 14: 158-162.


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