Health-Seeking Behaviors in Mozambique: A Mini-Study of Ethnonursing

Naoko Takeyama, Basilua Andre Muzembo, Yasmin Jahan, Michiko Moriyama

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)


In settings where traditional medicine is a crucial part of the healthcare system, providing culturally competent healthcare services is vital to improving patient satisfaction and health out-comes. Therefore, this study sought to gain insight into how cultural beliefs influence health-seeking behaviors (HSBs) among Mozambicans. Participant observation and in-depth interviews (IDIs) were undertaken using the ethnonursing method to investigate beliefs and views that Mozambicans (living in Pemba City) often take into account to meet their health needs. Data were analyzed in accordance with Leininger’s ethnonursing guidelines. Twenty-seven IDIs were carried out with 12 informants from the Makonde and Makuwa tribes. The choice of health service was influenced by perceptions of health and illness through a spiritual lens, belief in supernatural forces, dissatisfaction with and dislike of the public medical system on grounds of having received poor-quality treatment, perceived poor communication skills of health professionals, and trust in the indigenous medical system. This study confirmed the need for health professionals to carefully take cultural influences into consideration when providing care for their patients. We recommend an educational intervention that emphasizes communication skills training for healthcare workers to ensure successful physician/nurse–patient relationships.

Original languageEnglish
Article number2462
JournalInternational journal of environmental research and public health
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - Feb 1 2022


  • Cultural influence
  • Ethnonursing
  • Health-seeking behaviors
  • Mozambique

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pollution
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
  • Health, Toxicology and Mutagenesis


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