What is Cultural Competence?

cultural competence

Personalized Healthcare

So, for our upcoming podcast, Personalizing Health in a Diverse Setting. We speak with Wendy Mobley-Bukstein about how medical professionals can personalize healthcare to a patients sociocultural background and the goals of cultural competence.

“A higher proportion of African Americans and Latinos, compared to Whites, report that they have at least one of seven chronic conditions — asthma, cancer, heart disease, diabetes, high blood pressure, obesity, or anxiety/ depression. These rank among the most costly medical conditions in America (HPI).”

That is why having cultural competence in healthcare will provide services that can be able to meet the cultural and social needs of patients. Meeting these needs will address issues in healthcare for these patients.

What is Cultural Competence ?

This is the integration and transformation of knowledge about individuals and groups of people into specific standards, policies, practices, and attitudes used in appropriate cultural settings to increase the quality of services; thereby producing better outcomes (NPIN).

Principles include:

  1. Define culture broadly.
  2. Value clients’ cultural beliefs.
  3. Recognize complexity in language interpretation.
  4. Facilitate learning between providers and communities.
  5. Involve the community in defining and addressing service needs.
  6. Collaborate with other agencies.
  7. Professionalize staff hiring and training.

“Health and human service organizations are recognizing the need to enhance services for culturally and linguistically diverse populations. Providing culturally and linguistically appropriate healthcare services requires an understanding of cultural competence” (NPIN).


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