The appointment system influences uptake of cataract surgical services in Rwanda
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The aim of this study was to investigate barriers and enablers associated with the uptake of cataract surgery in Rwanda, where financial protection is almost universally available. This was a hospital-based cross-sectional study where potential participants were adults aged >18 years who accepted an appointment for cataract surgery during the study period (May-July 2019). Information was collected from hospital records and a semi-structured questionnaire was used for data collection. Of the 297 people with surgery appointments, 221 (74.4%) were recruited into the study, 126 (57.0%) of whom had attended their appointment. People more likely to attend their surgical appointment were literate, had fewer than 8 children, had poorer visual acuity, had access to a telephone in the family, received a specific date to attend their appointment, received a reminder, and reported no difficulties walking (95% significance level, p < 0.05). The most commonly reported barriers were insufficient information about the appointment (n = 40/68, 58.8%) and prohibitive indirect costs (n = 29/68, 42.6%). This study suggests that clear communication of appointment information and a subsequent reminder, together with additional support for people with limited mobility, are strategies that could improve uptake of cataract surgery in Rwanda.
Kitema , G F , Morjaria , P , Mathenge , W & Ramke , J 2021 , ' The appointment system influences uptake of cataract surgical services in Rwanda ' , International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health , vol. 18 , no. 2 , 743 . https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph18020743
International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health
Copyright: © 2021 by the authors. Licensee MDPI, Basel, Switzerland. This article is an open access article distributed under the terms and conditions of the Creative Commons Attribution (CC BY) license (https:// creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/).
DescriptionFunding: G.F.K. received funding to undertake a master’s degree from the British Council for the Prevention of Blindness, the Commonwealth Scholarships Commission UK, and the University of Rwanda (UR). Data collection was funded by the Travel Trust Fund at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine. J.R. was a Commonwealth Rutherford Fellow, funded by the UK government through the Commonwealth Scholarship Commission in the UK. J.R.’s position at the University of Auckland is funded by the Buchanan Charitable Foundation, New Zealand.
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