"Improving Cultural Competence" is a peculiar example of a paper on care. Christy can better improve her relation with Romani patients or any other patient with different cultural values by increasing her understanding of cultural diversity and competence. The latter pertains to set of values, behaviors, norms, and practices of a community or system that empower a medical practitioner to effectively and efficiently work with other persons with different cultural orientation and lifestyles while seeking healthcare (Galanti, 1997). This invites the practitioner to be dynamic, tolerant, and to adopt such commitment to continually reduce prejudices and biases against any patient. Christy needs to be aware that peoples are made up of systems and beliefs that are maybe different from her own and that they practice customary health care not attuned to modern medication. These peoples also possessed of customary beliefs about the causes of illnesses and thus reject medical diagnosis as disadvantageous and unhelpful for their patients.
Some of them perceived that medicines can in the long run cause death or may poison the human system, thus, they’ d prefer the use of herbal medication (Gropper, 1996). Reflection on cultural competence From this activity, I learned that not all people are similar and that we all have varied educational backgrounds, customary practices, belief systems, and different approaches to healthcare.
Those who came from communities, especially those from remote villages and those indigenous peoples, grow up with knowledge on the traditional method of medication. Hence, prefer herbal medication and are superstitious in their responses to modern healthcare. As a medical practitioner, I still need too to increase my cultural competence too to be able to exercise my profession well while practicing due diligence and my professional path. Medical practice needs to be applied free from political, economic, and social prejudices. It maybe takes some time to educate the community about the leading causes of their mortality, morbidity, and the need to introduce maternal and childcare system, but the same should be perpetually undertaken until they can understand holistic healthcare service (Gerteis, Edgman-Levitan, Daley, & Delbanco, 1993). Medical practitioners after all are not just merely influenced and educated about courses on modern sciences but also about social disciplines to enable us to understand the psychology, philosophy, and sociological influences of a patient (Iwaishi, Taba, Howard-Jones, Brockman, Yamashita, & Ambrose, 1998). Our profession is about saving lives and that does not require preconception and ignorance. Healthcare is in itself borderless and crosscut to all cultures. Improving cultural competence To improve our cultural competence, healthcare providers should be educated on multiculturalism and about social diversity to understand the social factors that govern the psyche and culture of people (Julia, 1996). They should be subjected to an immersion program too where they will stay with the community to understand fully peoples’ culture and influences.
Through this, theory and practices can be integrated well and understanding can be widened. Aside from this, medical practitioners also need to study psychology to correlate the application of profession to the behavioral and attitudinal pattern of every patient and thus, in a way, nurture the values of tolerance and deference. Otherwise, there will be misunderstanding and conflict that will compromise and weaken the American healthcare system (Galanti, 1997).
Galanti, G.A. (1997). Caring for Patients from Different Cultures: Case Studies from American Hospitals. University of Pennsylvania Press, Philadelphia. pp. 1-187.
Gerteis, M., Edgman-Levitan, S., Daley, J., Delbanco, TL (Eds.) (1993), Through the patient’s eyes: understanding and promoting patient-centered care. Jossey-Bass ublishers, San Francisco, California, pp 1-280.
Gropper, R. (1996). Culture and the Clinical Encounter: An Intercultural Sensitizer for the Health Professions. Intercultural Press, Yarmouth, Maine, pp. 1-10.
Iwaishi,L, Taba, S., Howard-Jones, A., Brockman, D., Yamashita, L, & Ambrose, A. (1998). Training on family-centered interprofessional collaboration. Health Education Collaboration Project, Hawaii Medical Association, pp. 2-10.
Julia, M. (1996). Multicultural Awareness in the HealthCare Professions. Allyn and Bacon, Boston. pp. 2-224.