Cultural Assessments in the Healthcare Setting

Posted: November 8th, 2023

Cultural Assessments in the Healthcare Setting

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Cultural Assessments in the Healthcare Setting

The contemporary nurse is expected to provide culturally diverse care that reflects patient values, practices and beliefs. Performing a cultural assessment employs a systematic approach that covers communication, space, time and environment control (Nair & Adetayo, 2019). I would begin the assessment by checking the patient and the immediate environment to identify ways to foster a healthy interaction. An example could include situating the patient in a private room to enhance their confidence to talk and share information. I will then initiate conversations with the patient, using simple open-ended questions that derive personal information, such as place of birth and childhood. The objective is to use dialogue to encourage the patient to describe their culture, including ethnic background and religion (Nair & Adetayo, 2019). A nurse can use several cultural assessment models, like Ginger and Davidhizar’s transcultural model.

Developing cultural competence in nursing requires strong patient-nurse relationships based on trust and respect. One time, I was dealing with a young adult Indian female who required frequent wound cleaning and dressing following a factory accident. I noticed the patient wore three strands of beads across her waist, impeding how the bandages were to be put. Miscommunication between a patient and health service providers can result in mistrust and decreased satisfaction (Jongen et al. 2018). I consulted the patient on what the beads meant, their importance and whether I could remove them to undertake the wound dressing. The request for consent showed the level of respect the hospital offers to its patients. In the end, I had to lift the beads to her upper abdomen to perform the dressing instead of removing them. According to the patient, breaking the waist beads would result in a temporary negative atmosphere in her life.


Jongen, C., McCalman, J., & Bainbridge, R. (2018). Health workforce cultural competency interventions: a systematic scoping review. BMC Health Services Research, 18(1), 232.

Nair, L., & Adetayo, O. A. (2019). Cultural competence and ethnic diversity in healthcare. Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery Global Open, 7(5), e2219.

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