A systematic review of studies which reported on telediabetes services within Indigenous communities was undertaken in June 2016. The aim of this study was to identify enablers and barriers associated with the delivery of telehealth services for diabetes care amongst Indigenous people.
A total of 14 articles met the study inclusion criteria, reporting work in Canada, Australia, India, and the US. Key enablers included the use of cultural and spiritual elements, acknowledgement of local beliefs and traditions, and appropriate community engagement.
The involvement of Indigenous health workers was also very important because of their role in communication in local language, helping clinicians understand the community, and the transportation of patients.
The main barriers associated with telediabetes services were the potentially high fail-to-attend rates, lack of technical skills associated with the operation of telehealth equipment, and the lack of availability of local staff.
Knowledge of the enablers and barriers associated with the delivery of healthcare services to Indigenous communities is important when planning a telediabetes service.
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