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Understanding Culture Of German Patients Essay

2179 words - 9 pages


Nurses might be surprised to know how many people from the German culture are in the United States. For the health professional it is especially important to know what health care concerns might be specific to the German-American patient. They also need to be informed because of German travelers who might be visiting or temporarily living in another country and are in need of care. According to the United States Census Bureau, (2012) out of the 307,007,000 people in the United states, the majority ancestry group comprising the population is German. There are 50,708,000 people whose ancestry was of German descent, (U.S. Census Bureau, 2012). In the United States there are a lot of cultural influences that come from Germany for this reason. It is important to remember that according to the US census Bureau, (2012) 1,109,216 people in the United States who are able to speak English also speak German. The current paper will give an overview of the German culture, a presentation of the six components of the Giger and Davidhizar Transcultural Assessment Model, and an explanation of how the nurse can incorporate these important key points in their daily patient care to provide optimum health care for a German patient.
To understand a German's cultural differences it helps the nurse to know what their traditions, and experiences are. The majority of Germans, a large 70 percent, are members of a Christian church. A large percentage of the rest of the population of Germany are self-confessed atheists. It would not be good practice therefore, to assume that because a majority of the population of Germany is Christian that everyone from there is.
Most Germans acquire food from both supermarkets and specialty shops, such as bakeries and butcher shops. Food is often obtained fresh daily, and it is customary to often walk to and from these shops each day for cheeses and milk. There are often very small refrigerators as most German people cherish fresh food. Bread is the main food at both breakfast and supper. Breakfast usually includes rolls of various kinds, while supper often consists of bread, sausages or cold cuts, cheese, and, perhaps, a salad or vegetable garnish. The warm meal of the day is still often eaten at noon, though modern work customs seem to promote integration of American patterns. Traditionally large family meals are still common around noon on Saturdays and Sundays. Pork is the most commonly consumed meat, sausages are often eaten also. Cabbage, beets, and turnips are native vegetables, which are often eaten. Potatoes and other starches are very common. Favorite alcoholic beverages include brandy and beer, which are not viewed as drinks that can cause alcoholism, as they are routinely consumed. According to Alwan, A., Armstrong, T., Cowan, M., and Riley, L., (2011) it is estimated that 66.8% of men and 54.5% of women are overweight 60.5. In addition 25.9% of men and 24.4% of women are obese. These...

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