Cultural Diversity

5 May 2017

The first is cultural autonomy which stresses the importance of folkways, customs and beliefs and retains the identity of a culture. The second is acculturation which is an acceptance of customs different from primary society and adapting to the rules of a new culture. The third is cultural imposition which imposes the ways of one culture onto another (Barker, 2009). The Hispanic population has exceeded that of African Americans and is now the largest minority group in the United States according to the 2000 census (Barker, 2009).

This creates not only language barriers but differences in cultural beliefs can create further ommunication barriers if the healthcare professional is not culturally competent. The purpose of this paper is to show the cultural beliefs and values of the Hispanic population and the implications for healthcare providers. Nursing assessment and discharge planning can only be effective if cultural values are incorporated into the care. Through the acknowledgement of these beliefs in our care we can improve the health outcomes of this community.

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Summary of Article The article The Hispanic Family and Male -Female Relationships: An Overview, Galanti focuses on traditional Hispanic family relationships their implications for ealth care providers. Recognizing the different degrees of acculturation, Galati focuses on the traditional unacculturated Hispanic family. The family is the primary unit and a strong cultural value in Hispanic culture (Galant’, 2003). Hispanic families are typically larger than the American family and often include extended family. The American family is based on the concept of the nuclear family.

Americans stress individualism and autonomy expecting patients to make their own health care decisions… Hispanics value familismo (loyalty and solidarity) and interdependence ithin the immediate and extended family therefore healthcare decisions may include the entire family. Along the same line, American culture stresses independence and self care whereas Hispanic family members tend to take care of the patient to the extent of limiting self care activities. A very important value of the Hispanic population is privacy and that emotional problems are to be kept private within the family.

Mental health illness is looked down upon and there is reluctance professionals. The author discusses two main features of the man’s role in the family…. These features are machismo and patriarchal authority (Galanti, 2003). A man’s role is to be a good provider and to protect and honor their families. This machismo . can also have negative connotation when the male feels he has to prove his masculinity by controlling women. When surveyed Hispanic students stated that the “women’s role was to cook and care for the children” (Galant’, 2003).

They also stated that a “good wife should be submissive and take orders from her husband” (Galant’, 2003). Men are viewed as the boss of the family and thus important decisions are deferred to the man of the house. Traditional Hispanic females are very modest in regards to their body and their sexuality. The prevailing religion among Hispanics is Catholicism. Application to Practice There are many implications and interventions relating to cultural differences in the Hispanic population that are important to recognize in delivering quality patient care.

Appreciating the importance of the family is of the utmost importance if we are to give holistic, quality care to the Hispanic patient. Nurses need to involve the family in healthcare decisions, care of the patient and discharge lanning. With Hispanic families being typically larger than American families, we must make accommodations for visitation of extended family while in the hospital. To help the patient that is going through rehabilitation achieve independence in self care the nurse could suggest other aspects of his care in which family members could participate as good compromise..

Traditional Hispanics may defer decision making to other family members Hispanics many times will want the physician to withhold information about a terminal illness (Galanti, 2003). It is important for roviders to discuss early on who should receive information on their condition. Modesty is very important to the Hispanic female patient therefore health care professionals should take measures to ensure patient privacy. The emphasis placed on machismo along with female modesty and women’s shyness regarding sexuality has an impact on Hispanic women’s health issues.

There is a high incidence of domestic violence in traditional Hispanic culture. The influence of Catholicism along with modestly and male dominance make it less likely for a Hispanic women to suggest a man use a condom. According to the Center for Disease Control, Hispanic women are one of the fastest growing Aids populations in the country. Hispanic women are less likely to do self breast exams or get annual Pap smears contributing to the rise in cervical cancer and delayed diagnosis of breast cancer in this cultural group (Galanti, 2003).

It is especially important for nurses to establish good communication with the Hispanic patient. Personalismo (personal, intimate relationship) is very important in many Hispanic cultures (Galanti, 2003). By developing a trusting relationship with the nurse, a Hispanic patient may open up nd discuss with the nurse private issues such as emotional or sexual problems, sexual abuse, or domestic violence that would otherwise go untreated and unrecognized. Conclusion As nurses we take care of patients and families from many different countries biases.

We must recognize these so we do not impose our beliefs on those with different cultural beliefs and values. In reading this article I became more aware of the strong cultural beliefs of the Hispanic culture their impact healthcare delivery. Simple things like involving the whole family in the care of the patient can helps stablish a trust between the health caregiver and the patient, The patient will therefore be more open to healthcare advise and more compliant with their treatment regimen .

Various ethnic groups have different social and cultural experiences and our increased cultural knowledge and empathy, of these ethnic heritages of our patients is essential for the promotion of trusting, positive relationships with our clients (Baker 2009). Focusing on cultural diversity prevents us from stereotyping our patients and helps us mold our care to the individual beliefs and values of each patient.

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Cultural Diversity. (2017, May 19). Retrieved June 25, 2019, from
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