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The Importance of Cultural Competency in Healthcare

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In order to decrease disparities of care to minorities or those that are of different cultural heritage, the medical profession needs to learn cultural competency. Access the Internet and find resources regarding cultural competency. Write a paper on your findings on cultural competency. Be sure to address the following:

(1) Define cultural competency.

(2) What are the top barriers identified to address in cultural competency?

(3) Would you mandate it be included in school curriculum?

(4) Why is it important, or not, for the health care profession to be aware of cultural competency?

(5) As a professional, what is the biggest difference you could make by practicing cultural competency

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(1) Define cultural competency.

Cultural competency means having the skills and knowledge that it takes to understand, communicate with, and perhaps, service effectively individuals from other cultures. Some individuals are naturally culturally competent, as expressed in their attitudes and behaviors towards those of a culture different than their own. However, other individuals who may be more subjective may hold certain biases that prevent them from relating to others more positively.

(2) What are the top barriers identified to address in cultural competency?

The top barriers to address in cultural competency are:

a) Lack of awareness of one's own cultural worldview. This means being aware of one's own prejudices and biases towards others of a different culture. For example, an individual may refer to others as "niggers, illegal aliens, etc..." Awareness of this type of attitude enables individuals to do something about their own belief system, ...

Solution Summary

In order to remove the barriers that can prevent a medical professional from effectively servicing a patient, it is very important for that professional to understand the concept of cultural competency and its applications in various institutions, such as health care and education/schools.

See Also This Related BrainMass Solution

Cultural Competency in Health Services

The field of cultural competence has recently emerged as part of a strategy to reduce disparities in access to and quality of health care. Since this is an emerging field, efforts to define and implement the principles of cultural competence are still ongoing. Cultural competence in health care describes the ability of systems to provide care to patients with diverse values, beliefs and behaviors, including tailoring delivery to meet patients' social, cultural, and linguistic needs.

Define cultural competency and describe its overall importance in the delivery of health services. Do you believe the healthcare delivery system is culturally sensitive in its delivery of services? Defend your position.

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