Cultural Competence

1018 Words May 9th, 2005 5 Pages
The American Academy of Family Physicians website defines cultural competence as:
"A set of congruent behaviors, attitudes and policies that come together as a system, agency or among professionals and enable that system, agency or those professionals to work effectively in cross-cultural situations. The word "culture" is used because it implies the integrated pattern of human thoughts, communications, actions, customs, beliefs, values and institutions of a racial, ethnic, religious or social group. The word competence is used because it implies having a capacity to function effectively."
Campinha-Bacote constructed a model that depicts cultural competence into five different areas: cultural awareness, cultural knowledge, cultural
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They usually end up being on the total opposite end of what I thought. This is why directly engaging in conversation with people of other cultures is a good idea.
Cultural desire is when a health care professional has the mindset of "wanting to" instead of "having to" be involved in the steps of becoming culturally aware, culturally knowledgeable, and culturally skillful and seek cultural encounters. An example of cultural desire would be voluntarily taking a class learning about another culture. I have cultural desire. I find it interesting to engage in conversation with a person of another culture and learn about the differences between our two cultures. I have had several patients who have been of a different culture and I am willing to care for many more.
By reviewing my position in each of the areas in the model, I realize that I do not yet fit into the expectations. I believe that I am on my way to achieving cultural competence. I still need to work on cultural awareness. I need to conduct a further self-examination to be sure I understand each of my biases. I need to start researching to improve my cultural knowledge. My cultural skill needs to improve in the aspect of becoming more comfortable in conducting a cultural assessment. I engage in conversations, and in friendships with people of other culture (cultural encounter) and enjoy becoming culturally aware and knowledgeable

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