Long-Term Health Service Outcomes Among Women With Traumatic Brain Injury
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OBJECTIVES: To (1) assess long-term health care service utilization and satisfaction with health care services among women with traumatic brain injury (W-TBI); (2) examine barriers that prevent W-TBI from receiving care when needed; and (3) understand the perceived supports available for W-TBI. DESIGN: Retrospective cohort study. SETTING: Community. PARTICIPANTS: W-TBI (n=105) 5 to 12 years postinjury and women without TBI (n=105) matched on age, education, and geographic location. INTERVENTIONS: Not applicable. MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES: Pre- and postinjury data were collected using a questionnaire administered via a semistructured interview. Questions on health services utilization, satisfaction with and quality of services, barriers to receiving care, and perceived social support were from the Canadian Community Health Survey; additional questions on perceived social support were from another large-scale study of people with moderate to severe brain injury. RESULTS: Compared with women without TBI, W-TBI reported using more family physician and community health services. W-TBI reported that they did not receive care when needed (40%), particularly for emotional/mental health problems. Significantly more W-TBI reported financial and structural barriers. There were no significant differences in reported satisfaction with services between women with and without TBI. CONCLUSIONS: Health service providers and policymakers should recognize the long-term health and social needs of W-TBI and address societal factors that result in financial and structural barriers, to ensure access to needed services.
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