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Medications, migration and the cultural texturing of familial healthcare

Medications are a central part of health care systems, and are used to cure, halt or prevent diseases, and to easy symptoms. How medications are understood and used by people, including migrants in everyday life remains unclear. With globalisation on the increase, many people are no longer constrained to a single country. People often relocate to other countries where they may continue to maintain their cultural traditions and practices. Among the cultural traditions and practices maintained by migrants are their medication practices, customs and understandings. This thesis explores understandings, uses and social practices associated with medications in the everyday lives of three migrant groups. These groups are represented by three Zimbabwean, three Tongan and three Chinese households who have relocated to New Zealand. Householder experiences, medication practices and associated understandings were collated using a variety of methods. These included individual interviews with the households, household discussions, photographs, diaries, material objects, and media content to capture the complex and fluid nature of popular understandings and use of medications. This thesis provides insight into the cultural values and practices of these nine migrant households pertaining to how they acquire, use, share, and store their indigenous and biomedical medications. My focus on medications and the sourcing of these medicinal objects within New Zealand and from migrants’ countries of origin sheds new light on hybrid healthcare practices in the present epoch of global relocation. The study takes into account different forms of medications. These include biomedical drugs, alternative medicines, traditional medicines and dietary supplements.
Type of thesis
Kamutingondo, S. (2014). Medications, migration and the cultural texturing of familial healthcare (Thesis, Master of Applied Psychology (MAppPsy)). University of Waikato, Hamilton, New Zealand. Retrieved from https://hdl.handle.net/10289/8986
University of Waikato
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