Health status and functioning after traumatic spinal cord injury in South Africa: Comparison between a private and a public health care funded cohort
Jeftha, Tarryn Kim
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Introduction: A spinal cord injury is the damage to the spinal cord that alters functional independence. Two different systems of care for the management of health conditions are available in private and public care in South Africa. A better understanding of health and functioning of individuals in the two systems is crucial to help address inequality between the two systems. The aim of the study was to describe the health status and functioning of persons with traumatic spinal cord injury (TSCI) in the Western Cape province who received public-funded care compared with those in the Gauteng province who received private care. Methodology: The study entailed a cross-section comparison between a government-funded cohort in the Western Cape and a private cohort in Gauteng, two of the provinces of South Africa. Self-administered questionnaires and standardised outcome measures were used to collect the data and to ensure validity and reliability. Data were captured on Excel and then transferred to SPSS (Statistical Package for Social Sciences) for analysis. Ethical clearance to conduct the study was obtained from the Biomedical Research Ethics Committee of the University of the Western Cape.