Cultural Competence: A Case Study

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Cultural competence is an essential aspect of healthcare practice (Hart and Mareno, 2014).
Leininger (1991, p. 49) defines culturally congruent care as ‘Those cognitively based assistive, supportive, facilitative or enabling acts or decisions that are tailor-made to fit with individual, group or institutional cultural values, beliefs and life ways to provide or support meaningful, beneficial, and satisfying healthcare or well-being services.’ The aim of this assignment is to critically evaluate Video 2 ‘Food’. This student will explore models and theories of cultural competence, focusing particularly on cultural awareness and cultural knowledge for the purpose of this essay. The key issues raised which will be discussed
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While the individual’s religion should have been established and recorded on admission, it appears that a comprehensive assessment has not been successfully carried out. ! Cultural awareness in the 3-D Puzzle Model described by Schim et al. (2007) highlights the importance of asking individual questions. It involves gaining understanding that food choices, for example Hindu meals are commonly influenced by religious practices. While groups of Hindus share many of the same beliefs, they do have different opinions on others.
Gaining a knowledge of what individual beliefs patients and their family have is important as practices of certain groups of Hindus could be offensive to others (Wilkins and Mailoo,
2010). When the patient did remind the professionals that she follows a Hindu diet, the scrapping of the meat off the plate portrayed disrespect for the patient as an individual with different cultural needs. Being disrespected damages the potential for a therapeutic relationship between the patient and their family (Narayanasamy, 2002). Cultural awareness includes the knowledge about the effects of culture on individual’s everyday
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In gaining knowledge of specific groups Campinha-Bacote (1998) and Purnell (1998) state the four stages nurses experience: unconscious incompetence, conscious incompetence, conscious competence and unconscious competence. Being unaware that an individual is lacking in cultural knowledge is referred to as unconscious incompetence. Such healthcare professionals may read articles or attend classes about cultural diversity. They may hence know that culture plays a role in the delivery of care but do not know how to use this knowledge (Campinha-Bacote, 1998). While this student agrees with Narayanasamy (2002) that it is almost impossible to be an expert in all cultures, it is however expected that healthcare professionals make efforts to gain an insight into the cultural backgrounds of patients under their care. ! What this student considers to be one of the most important issues to remember is that while having a knowledge of cultures and ethnic groups is essential, cultures are not all static. Understanding a diverse culture is not as simple as memorising a list

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