Recounted in this article is the saga of a team’s rural research journey over nearly 20 years. From the outset the overall goal of our research was the promotion of informed health care choices by older rural dwellers. The purpose of sharing our journey story is to illustrate how a program of nursing research can thrive despite being conducted in a low nursing research resource environment, across geographic distances, and with a limited patchwork of funding. This journey began with several collaborative studies on the use of complementary and alternative therapies (CAM) by older rural dwellers. A detour in the research journey trajectory occurred with the advent of national recognition of the key role of general health literacy and more specifically the lack of research in the area of health literacy regarding CAM. The research team’s journey moved to the conceptualization and development of a model of CAM health literacy. This model then served as the basis for creating and the initial testing a measure of CAM health literacy. The intention of this article is to be instructive to other research teams as they travel along their own research journeys.
Keywords: nursing research, rural, CAM health literacy
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