I am a Level IV nursing student and I am in the process of doing a research/change paper. I have chosen the topic of Cultural/Ethinic Considerations in Nursing. I need a little input to determine if this idea would be of help or just another pain for everyone.
In the recent years and during nursing school we have been taught that due to the changing diversity of cultures and ethnicities in our communities that we as nurses have to know and take into consideration the differences concerning healthcare, religion, food preferences, and other things that we ourselves may not have any knowledge about all these different patients.
My idea is to implement a database that would give the information to all personnel in a facility about the different cultures, ethnicities, and religious preferences.
Would it be a benefit to you if when you received a new patient you were given a specific list for that patient with prompt questions so you would have a better understanding of their beliefs, customs, and religious restrictions? As an example: Kosher Jewish; I understand that dairy and meats are not suppose to be served together or that the two should never have been put on the same plates. If this is true this questionaire would provide that information and it could be forwarded to Nutrition services so they could serve this patient's food on disposable trays and cultery.
Would this help or would you feel that it was just more paperwork to fill out?
I recently heard an interesting story about Gypsies in the Houston Texas area. Every year they converge on the medical center downtown and camp on the lawns for several weeks. If anyone of them become a patient they will place a pile of dirt under the bed because they believe that their illness must be passed into the soil to be healed. It is the nursing staffs responsibility to make sure that housekeeping does not remove that dirt until that patient is discharged. None of my faculty had ever heard of this either and that was one of the reasons I decided to research and develop a database to provide this information to help nurses and other medical personnel.
Please let me know your opinion very soon. I am working on this paper this week and have to turn it in on March 23rd.
You could sum this "class" up in about 10 seconds. Treat others how you would want to be treated. There you go, A for the day. Seriously, this kind of ****** is why new grads have to go through hospital orientation programs to learn how to be a nurse. If Nursing Educators really want to be teaching this cultural diversity crap then they should at least cover useful topics...such as pharmacokinetic/dynamic differences that are apparent among different races, why some classes of meds work on one group and not well on another. At least you could apply that to nursing. Actually, that would be a helpful database for you to put together. You could probably even get it written up in the ANA journal.
Last edit by sirI on Mar 15, '09
Good point Vashtee! In the same time is how different people are more approachble from ethnic and cultural point of view
And i will tell you a story. My first month working in hospital... a East European man patient of mine. He recognized my accent and asked me from where I am. Talk. After that he adress me in his native language, "now YOU need to explain me what means all of that NO ONE WANT TO TALK WITH ME!"
Well, what he stated wasn't true! All nurses and doctors tried to talk with him. BUT they talked and communicate with him in english communication style that is TOTALLY in another way than in Eastern Europe style. You could talk a perfect english, if you don't communicate like people from EE communication is nothing.... is just coldness, distance, arogance! And belive me, now after so many years in America sometime I fell the same.
"I have trust in you, you came from there, like me, explain me, what they say !" Very hard situation for me, very distresfull for him! I asked him what "english doctor" told him! He told me. After that half in his maternal language (I forgot a loooot, lol), half in english, I explaind him, that is perfect true what the doctor told him, BUT on EE approach, much more warm, much more subjective, much more hugging. Is EE style! Talking about past, about places about people, about culture, he make jokes about how many americans lovers I have, looool... he was going happy! Very sick and very happy!
Now frim english point of view...How many ENGLISH nurses could communicate in that way! Is not admited! Is ultrageous, is harassment! But for him wasn't ...was just his native style!
This man was very sick, but he was going home happy! If he will ask a english nurse all the time the same question and ask and try to find and clarify... english style will clasify him like anxious, depress, argumentative, and take actions against his behavior. But he was just a great man positioned in his former country, away from his native land in the last 50 years, working here, and now an old man in USA, very sick patient for me, and why not... my inner personal part was involved.
I was non professional because I didn't used professional english style of communication, may be.... but THIS patient, american citizen now, who paid thousand of dollars for his hospitalizasion, was going home happy and full of hope, and for sure he will tell to all his community... "going there, going on that hopsital... is Zuzi there, she will explain you all like in our former country, are good doctors in that hospital, but are just in another way, need to understand them, she will explain you all if you don't understand somenthing"
This is the "customer service" nurse role! Patient happy, he will come back, because OF YOU or going out also because OF YOU!
Another arabian one, talked on very high level with me, I put my eyes down and all the time I asked him, "Would you like? What is your wish Sir? " is a style THE MAN, cultural style. Do you think that for me the ultrafeminist Zuzi was easy??? At all! But he needed to stay happy! He give us money, from his money came my check, he need to stay happy!
We need ALL to know about these paterns and respect them . May be some cutural profiles and standard sentences could be usefull and some curtosy behavior applied and avoided in patinet care will be appreciated.
Last edit by zuzi on Mar 15, '09