"Cuban Medicine" is a great example of a paper on social and family issues. The Cuban communication culture has a distinctive pattern, which calls for an understanding by every communicator, before addressing any Cuban, since a failure to understand such culture would give a message that is different from the intended one. In Cuba, the emphasis is not placed on what is being said, but how it is being said (Luis, 2001). Therefore, gestures and facial expression plays a greater role in communication, since the recipient of the message places a great emphasis on them.
Additionally, the context of communication is yet another cultural pattern of communication in Cuba, where the interaction is highly dependent on who is passing some information to whom, and the context in which the information is discussed. Therefore, while addressing Mrs. Hernandez, it is vital to apply the right gestures and expressions, while also ensuring to avoid blunt and direct speech, which is interpreted as insulting in the Cuban culture (Dossick, 1992). Further, the nature of the social relationship plays a greater role in determining how the message is conveyed.
Thus, being a doctor, it is essential to pass the message to Mrs. Hernandez in a more polite way, considering that giving such information as an order is likely to cause a misconception of the message on her side, which would mean that she will not follow the information given. Another important aspect that needs to be understood about the Cuban communication pattern is the value of greetings and keeping eye contact while conversing. Greetings are highly valued in Cuban society, while the failure to maintain eye contact while communicating is interpreted to mean dishonesty (Ugarriza, 2001).
Thus, these two aspects should be included in the communication with Mrs. Hernandez. Considering that Mrs. Hernandez perceives the Cuban meals as healthy and sufficient for her health condition, there is a need to assist her in developing a plan for a 1500-calorie diet and regular exercise. However, regarding regular exercise, there is hardly any problem, since the Cuban culture upholds health on physiological, psychological, emotional, and social fronts (Danielson, 1978). Therefore, exercising would be easy for her, since it is a Cuban culture for any patient.
However, the preparation of her diet will require the input of her family, since social relationships are highly valued in the Cuban culture (Luis, 2001). By impressing on the need to prepare the 1500 calorie diet for Mrs. Hernandez on her family members, they will certainly impress on her to take the diet, following the prescribed ingredients. The use of herbs is a common phenomenon in the Cuban healthcare system, where natural medicines, in form of herbs, are widely accepted (Danielson, 1978). Thus, changing her desire for herbs as the appropriate medicine for her condition would not be easy.
Nevertheless, with a suitable and clear explanation of her condition and the suitability of a hypoglycemic agent to address the condition as opposed to the herbs, Mrs. Hernandez can be convinced to change her preference for herbs. However, this is only achievable through liaising with her family, since the family can easily influence her decisions, considering that social relationships, especially the family units, are highly valued in the Cuban society (Luis, 2001). Taking a spoonful of honey every morning is among the folk practices observed in Cuba to prevent many illnesses.
Additionally, another folk practice in Cuban healthcare is the prevention of pregnancy, which has been done through the application of honey in the Vagina, so that the sperms can remain stuck on the honey, thus avoid implantation (Danielson, 1978).
Danielson, R. S. (1978). Cuban medicine. New Brunswick, N.J: Transaction Books.
Dossick, J. J. (1992). Cuba, Cubans and Cuban-Americans, 1902-1991: A bibliography. Coral Gables, FL: North-South Center, University of Miami.
Luis, W. (2001). Culture and customs of Cuba. Westport, Conn.: Greenwood Press.
Ugarriza, N. N. (2001). Intra-cultural communication patterns of Cubans in the post-revolutionary period. Thesis (M.A.)--University of Miami.