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Table 1 Difficulties in Clinical Interactions with Migrant Patients (N = 204)

From: Cultural competency and sensitivity in the curriculum for palliative care professionals: a survey in Switzerland

  Not at all
problematic
A little problematic Rather problematic Very problematic
Variable N % N % N % N %
Cluster I         
1) Absence of a shared common language with the patient 3 1.5 23 11.3 87 42.6 91 44.6
2) Discussion of sensitive topics (e.g., end of life, death, intimacy) 10 4.9 35 17.2 98 48 61 29.9
3) Patients’ level of comprehension 7 3.4 40 19.6 105 51.5 52 25.5
4). Absence of written materials in other languages (e.g., brochures, consent forms) 12 5.9 35 17.2 91 44.6 66 32.4
5) Absence of referent individuals in cross-cultural clinical work 9 4.4 43 21.1 93 45.6 59 28.9
6) Patients’ perceptions of illness, death, treatments and the healthcare system (e.g., role of palliative care) 7 3.4 46 22.5 97 47.5 54 26.5
7) Patients’ financial resources (e.g., body repatriation, arrival of relatives) 14 6.9 46 22.5 85 41.7 59 28.9
8) Patients’ active involvement in decision making 18 8.8 43 21.1 95 46.6 48 23.5
Cluster II         
9) Lack of knowledge about living conditions and residence status of migrants 10 4.9 61 29.9 85 41.7 48 23.5
10) Lack of knowledge about health and support networks for precarious patients (e.g., asylum seekers, undocumented migrants) 13 6.4 60 29.4 86 42.2 45 22.1
11) Relatives’ involvement in care and decision making 17 8.3 56 27.5 94 46.1 37 18.1
12) Symptom and pain assessment and investigation of their meaning for patients 15 7.4 59 28.9 97 47.5 33 16.2
13) Access to professional interpreters 23 11.3 54 26.5 83 40.7 44 21.6
14) Integration of the diversity of religious and spiritual beliefs and practices (e.g., opinion about sedation) 21 10.3 60 29.4 82 40.2 41 20.1
15) Required efforts (e.g., time of consultation, organization) 23 11.3 60 29.4 108 52.9 13 6.4
16) Translation by relatives 32 15.7 65 31.9 79 38.7 28 13.7
Cluster III         
17) Logistics management (e.g., rooms for rituals, reception of important groups of visitors) 25 12.3 86 42.2 58 28.4 35 17.2
18) Collaboration with professional interpreters or colleagues providing translation 44 21.6 83 40.7 63 30.9 14 6.9
19) Colleagues’/superiors’ sensitivity to cultural diversity 32 15.7 96 47.1 56 27.5 20 9.8
20) Preconceived notions about certain groups of patients 48 23.5 100 49 49 24 7 3.4
21) Collaboration with religious representatives 53 26 103 50.5 43 21.1 5 2.5