Rural secondary school students living in a small community: their attitudes, beliefs and perceptions towards general practice

Atkinson, Kaye, Schattner, Peter, and Margolis, Stephen (2003) Rural secondary school students living in a small community: their attitudes, beliefs and perceptions towards general practice. Australian Journal of Rural Health, 11 (2). pp. 73-80.

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Abstract

OBJECTIVE: To study the attitudes and beliefs towards general practice of rural secondary school students, in particular, their perception of the barriers to the effective delivery of primary health care.

SETTING: Students attending a government-funded secondary school in a rural community of less than 4000 people. SUBJECTS: 250 students in years 7-12 were surveyed, with 177 (71%) replying, 45% of these being male.

DESIGN: Cross-sectional, self-administered questionnaire survey.

RESULTS: The study found that most students value general practitioners (GPs) as valuable sources of health care, feel they have reasonable access to care and in most instances appear to attend appropriately for their health problems. Most felt their doctor would be an empathetic listener, would provide sufficient time to provide effective care and communicated in a language they could understand. Confidentiality issues were considered important, especially by females.

CONCLUSION: Although students have very positive attitudes about general practice, the findings could be used to improve a number of GP services for young people in small rural communities. This is particularly so for presentations which require a high degree of confidentiality and skillful counselling, such as psychological problems and risk-taking behaviours.

Item ID: 9479
Item Type: Article (Refereed Research - C1)
Keywords: adolescents; attitudes; primary care; rural community
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ISSN: 1440-1584
Date Deposited: 27 Jul 2010 23:25
FoR Codes: 11 MEDICAL AND HEALTH SCIENCES > 1117 Public Health and Health Services > 111717 Primary Health Care @ 50%
11 MEDICAL AND HEALTH SCIENCES > 1199 Other Medical and Health Sciences > 119999 Medical and Health Sciences not elsewhere classified @ 50%
SEO Codes: 92 HEALTH > 9205 Specific Population Health (excl. Indigenous Health) > 920506 Rural Health @ 50%
92 HEALTH > 9204 Public Health (excl. Specific Population Health) > 920499 Public Health (excl. Specific Population Health) not elsewhere classified @ 50%
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