Culture and Healthcare
Culture is one of the factors that healthcare providers need to consider among their patients as it affects their perception of everything around them. The culture dictates what the patients think is important that could affect their health. Some individuals may value the input of conventional healthcare system while others may reject the practices. Moreover, these values affect the way patients communicate with the healthcare providers. Thus, medical professionals need to understand the interactions of culture and healthcare to improve the outcomes (Napier et al., 2014).
African Americans have values that vary depending on the generation. However, the culture still affects the health assessments among this group of people due to their perception. Most of the elderly individuals would not go for medical screening unless they find healthcare professionals that they trust due to historical factors (Hansen, Hodgson & Gitlin, 2016). Besides, men in African American societies have a low likelihood of seeking medical screening due to normative expectations. Therefore, the culture of African American significantly influences their perception of the healthcare system and ability to seek assistance.
An example of cultural consideration occurred while I was working as a healthcare professional. A colleague first understood the beliefs of the patient that significantly showed that God was the healer even in the process of receiving medical care. As part of the care process, the nurse would pray with the patient before providing care services even though the nurse was an atheist. The situation made the patient have a productive relationship with the nurse until the patient recovered.
The first part of delivering is culturally diverse care is through understanding every patient differently without assumptions. Elimination of assumptions about patients’ cultures and valuing diversity is crucial in the provision of culturally diverse care (Rittle, 2015). As a healthcare provider, being conscious of intercultural interactions is crucial in dealing with multicultural societies. The process will involve respectful communication concerning their beliefs and values. Provision of the services will consider the needs of the patients based on their values.
1. Hansen, B. R., Hodgson, N. A., & Gitlin, L. N. (2016). It’s a Matter of Trust: Older African Americans Speak About Their Health Care Encounters. Journal of Applied Gerontology : The Official Journal of the Southern Gerontological Society, 35(10), 1058–1076. http://doi.org/10.1177/0733464815570662
2. Napier, A. D., Ancarno, C., Butler, B., Calabrese, J., Chater, A., Chatterjee, H., & Macdonald, A. (2014). Culture and health. The Lancet, 384(9954), 1607-1639.
3. Rittle, C. (2015). Multicultural Nursing: Providing Better EmployeeCare. Workplace health & safety, 63(12), 532-538.
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