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Florida National University Cultural Competence Discussion

Florida National University Cultural Competence Discussion

Question Description

During assessment of a patient, a nurse will be able to gather information regarding a patient’s culture. Most hospitals have standard admitting questionnaires that have cultural beliefs as an assessment topic. By asking the patient how and when they seek medical care, along with acceptable treatments, a nurse can get a better understanding of the patient’s culture.

Falkner defines cultural competence as, “being aware of differences related to culture and adjusting plans of care accordingly as well as remaining sensitive and respectful of choices patients may make based on their culture” (Falkner, 2018).

A nurse needs to recognize that a patient’s culture may alter their treatment plan. For example, I once had a patient who was Muslim and was fasting for Ramadan from dawn to sunset. The patient had gone on a bike ride one afternoon and had fallen which resulted in a small subdural hematoma. The patient was stable and admitted to the ICU. When the patient arrived, he was upset that the nurses and doctors in the emergency room had not respected his culture and had told him he could no longer fast. The patient had agreed on IV fluids to help rehydrate him but declined any food we had to offer. This was during a peak month of COVID, and the ER staff had also told him he couldn’t have his family bring him food. Luckily, we had an understanding ICU intensivist that night and we worked together to allow the patient’s family to come and bring him his nightly meal after sunset. The patient was very grateful and resulted in him participating in his care and treatment. I feel like this is a good example of showing cultural competency and how it relates to better patient care.

Falkner, A. (2018) Health Promotion: Health and Wellness Across the Continuum. Cultural Awareness.

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