Core Concepts in Cultural Competence

About This Topic

Welcome to the Core Concepts in Cultural Competence lesson. This lesson will present concepts central to cultural competence.

Photo of family living in povertyIn this lesson, we will present the concepts of culture, explanatory model and health beliefs. We also discuss the impact of social factors on patients’ ability to access health care, as these are often intricately interconnected with the patient’s culture. Patients’ levels of acculturation are also discussed. Suggestions for working with culturally diverse families will be offered.

A case story will illustrate these concepts. It tells how staff at Kendrick Hospital dealt with making the hospital more culturally competent when faced with working with an influx of Roma patients. The case story and following learning activities will show you how these concepts and issues may be dealt with in a real life situation.

What you will learn

After you complete this lesson you will be able to do the following:

  • Define cultural competence, health beliefs and social factors.
  • Describe how cultural and social factors can affect patient's approach and experience of healthcare.
  • Work effectively with patients from cultures other than one’s own.
  • Appreciate that self awareness is important in working with people from other cultures.

To get the most from this lesson

Proceed through the side bar items from top to bottom. Go through the course by using the side bar links. Take the exam last.

To learn more from this lesson we recommend that you approach it in the following way:

  • Before you begin, think about patients you have worked with from other cultures and people from other cultures that you have known as friends.
  • Reflect on how you have felt with patients and/or friends from other cultures.
  • Consider what you learned from your experiences with patients/friends from other cultures.