Ethical issues of relevance to the study

Ethical approval was obtained from the ethics committees of all of the involved universities and the regional ethics committee in Uppsala. Participants in the qualitative interviews were first engaged in an informal conversation about the project and then if interested in being interviewed were given a participant information form. This outlined the purpose of the project and where they were unable to speak the local language or English, the form was translated for them by a community researcher. Once participants had read the form they were given the opportunity to ask questions about the study and also informed how data would be utilised. They were then requested to formalise their participation. Both the interviewee and interviewer signed the consent forms which stressed confidentiality and anonymity and the option to withdraw from interviews at any time during the actual interview or to withdraw their data up to 30 days after the interview was completed. The participant names used in the empirical chapters that follow are pseudonyms.

The process for seeking ethical approval from healthcare providers was similar except that consent and information forms were only available in local languages and English; community researchers were not involved in translating into other- languages. Similarly, participants of the household survey were informed about the aims of the study and data protection procedures. All participants provided written, or for telephone interviews verbal, informed consent to participate in the household survey and with the option to withdraw their consent for 30 days after the survey was completed.

Summary

This chapter has offered a comprehensive insight into the challenges associated with researching health, welfare and healthcare access in areas of increasing population diversity. Focusing on the ‘differences that make a difference' in terms of understanding how, when and why individuals attempt to address a health concern is crucial in terms of moving away from siloed or ‘groupism’ approaches, which have often adopted an ethno-national lens. In particular, we set out in some detail the methods that were employed by the UPWEB project in order to highlight both the challenges and opportunities that were of relevance to our approach to studying access to healthcare in diverse areas. We argued that the adoption of a parallel sequential mixed methods approach enables a unique and detailed insight into the ways in which residents acted to address their health concerns and the approaches that a wide range of providers - often collaborating across what we describe as the welfare ecosystem - adopted to meet complex needs. Furthermore, by bringing the qualitative interview and household survey findings together, we were able to explore different patterns and relationships between the characteristics and dispositions of individuals and the types of actions and resources that were utilised in order to try and resolve a health concern. In the next part of the book we therefore use the results that were generated through the use of such methods to explore in more detail the actions residents used to address a health concern - which we describe as bricolage - the motivations for these actions, and the relationship between the characteristics of residents, levels of health literacy, trust and agency and their bricolage tactics.

 
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