Culturally competent healthcare delivery is not just the right thing to do, it ‘s also good business sense. It is the culturally competent organization that will have a competitive edge in the health care market and a decreased likelihood of liability/malpractice claims.
The culturally competent healthcare organization:
1. Empowers staff to work comfortably and effectively across the cultural and linguistic boundaries.
2. Takes a holistic view of health, inclusive of cultural health beliefs and practices, as well as the physical, mental and emotional aspects of diverse groups.
3. Provides training opportunities that tie cultural competence to improved health outcomes and promote culturally competent care, including awareness of:
- demographics of cultures served and relevant cultural data
- disease and illness patterns
- health and wellness beliefs
- expectations about provider/client relationship
- communication style (both verbal and nonverbal)
- relevant laws relating to cultural and linguistic access
- Self-awareness of one’s own cultural beliefs, biases, and communication patterns
4. Promotes a system of recruitment and retention of qualified staff from diverse backgrounds who understand their patient cultures and communities in order to support an organizational culture that can better serve the community.
5. Incorporates linguistically appropriate services and provide appropriate language assistance at all points of contact. This may includes bilingual staff, interpreters and written materials (including signage) in commonly used client languages. This may also include accent reduction training for employees to be more understandable to clients.