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Identify barriers to cultural competence and note ways that the nurse can improve the nurse-patient and nurse-family relationshi - Research Paper Example

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Cultural Competence in Nursing Cultural competence is very important in the field of nursing since nurses serve as the advocates of patients. Nurses are taught to protect the dignity and safeguard the rights of the patients. With the increasing globalization and growing multiculturalism in the society, the need for cultural competence in nurses has never been stronger…
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Identify barriers to cultural competence and note ways that the nurse can improve the nurse-patient and nurse-family relationshi
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Download file to see previous pages The process of learning the traits of the local culture starts right from birth. As they grow up, nurses assimilate into their indigenous culture that can have a profound effect on the way they interact with the patients as well as the way they operate in the health care system. Cultural competence essentially means the ability to deal with the differences of beliefs, opinions, values, and practices grounded in cultural differences in an articular manner so that the quality of work is enhanced and conflicts are deterred. Barriers to cultural competence of nurses include but are not limited to discrimination, prejudice, stereotyping, racism, lack of awareness, and lack of language proficiency. Certain barriers are overtly noticeable such as lack of language competency because the nurse cannot communicate with the other person while other barriers are hidden such as lack of awareness of the belief systems of different cultures. In certain situations, nurses display a lack of sensitivity even without any intention to offend the other person. This lack of sensitivity is grounded in nurses’ lack of awareness of the different sets of beliefs and norms that comprise different cultures. ...
Although it is very difficult to fully master the values of different cultures, it should be understood that good manners are appreciated and interpreted as symbols of respect in almost every culture. Simple steps like asking the patients how their day has been and asking them by what name or title do they want to be addressed inculcates respect in the hearts of the patients and coworkers for the nurses. In order to develop cultural competence, it is imperative that nurses acknowledge the existence of a variety of belief systems in the society. There are times when others’ health care practices appear meaningless or strange. Nurses might find others’ beliefs about the health care services in their country difficulty to understand. While it is not required of a nurse to fully understand the whole variety of belief systems of their patients, yet nurses need to have respect for them. Nurses should avoid making assumptions about the beliefs of people from different cultures if they are not familiar with the values of those cultures. “Cultural competence is obtaining cultural information and then applying that knowledge” (, 2012). In light of this definition of cultural competence, it is more advisable for the nurses to ask those individuals very thoughtfully and professionally how things are done in their culture, if necessary. The nurses need to try to find out the level of awareness in the patients about their health problems, methods of treatment, and the expected outcomes. Nurses should display respect for the support groups of the patients as well that may include anybody ranging from family members to religious leaders. Cultural competence is one of the most ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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