Cultural Sensitivity, Knowledge, And Skills From Nurses

870 words - 4 pages

Nowadays, nurses not only need to know how to care of their patients, but they also must be able to care of patients from other cultures with many beliefs and values. Cultural views of individual influence the patient’s perception and decision of health and health care (Creasia & Parker, 2007). In order to care for people across different languages and cultures, nurses need to develop cultural sensitivity, knowledge, and skills.
Cultural sensitivity means being aware that cultural differences and similarities exist and have an effect on values, learning, action, and behavior (Stanhope, et al., 2005). Beliefs and practices about health and illness are different with different cultures. With appropriate respect and interaction, nurses can win the patients’ trust. A culturally competent nurse must discard the assumption that all patients evaluate the quality of the care they receive the same way. Nurses should understand that culture is a fundamental part of patients' lives, and cultural barriers may impede care access and delivery (Hagman, 2007). A nurse needs to have varied beliefs and strategies for handling situations and patient care issues. She needs to listen and be tolerant. Being understanding of differences will not only broaden her own horizons, but also will help her to become a better nurse. A cultural competent nurse should ask questions and listen carefully to the answers in order to better understand the cultural diversity issues in health care that affect her patient. This approach emphasizes the patient’s role in promoting his wellness and in his responsibility for his own care. Being sensitive and showing respect for different cultural patients are nurses’ job (Quan, nd).
Cultural knowledge is the process of seeking and obtaining a sound educational foundation about diverse cultural and ethnic groups. In order to obtain this knowledge base, a nurse must focus on the integration of three specific issues: health-related beliefs and cultural values, disease incidence and prevalence, and treatment efficacy (Campinha-Bacote, 2002). This knowledge includes patients’ world view which explains how they interpret their illness and how it guides their thinking, doing, and being. A nurse can develops cultural knowledge by educating herself or himself about the world view of other cultures and ethnic groups (Creasia & Parker, 2007) about diseases and health conditions, and variations in drug metabolism (Lee, et al, 2006). Some of the ways a nurse can acquire knowledge by reading about different cultures, attending continuing education courses on cultural competence, and attending cultural diversity conferences (Lee, et al, 2006). In clinical setting, a nurse should ask patients how they wish to be addressed. Never make assumptions about individuals or their beliefs. Try to ask...

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