Background: Immigrants diagnosed with cancer face multiple challenges within an unfamiliar health system. There is limited information about how the concept of survivorship is conceptualised by cancer survivors from Culturally and Linguistically Diverse (CALD) backgrounds. To understand the issues faced by CALD cancer survivors, we conducted focus groups with individuals from Chinese and Greek nationalities.
Aim: To understand how the concept of survivorship is conceptualised by CALD survivors.
Methods:Cancer survivors whose native language was Mandarin, Cantonese or Greek were identified through ethno-specific cancer support groups and cancer specialists in two states of Australia. Focus groups were facilitated by researchers in the participants’ native language and followed a semi-structured interview format. Focus groups were taped, transcribed and analysed for principle themes.
Results:Six focus groups were conducted involving 41 CALD cancer survivors. There was an overall antipathy to the term “survivor,” with the term “recovery” preferred. Participants from all three language groups expressed a strong desire for practical information following treatment particularly related to changes in lifestyle, as well as information about ways to cope with the physical and emotional consequences of treatment. All requested more information in their own language and all had a preference for written material.
Conclusions:The findings emphasise that people treated for cancer from CALD communities have overlapping but distinct requirements compared with those of the native community. It is not sufficient to translate materials into the relevant language.Implications for cancer survivors: Identification of CALD-specific issues enables the development of targeted support materials.