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Cultural Competency Part II

Cultural competency, or how we understand and view other people can greatly impact our work in the healthcare field.  One of the greatest assets we can obtain is knowing our patients and where they come from.  This can ultimately help us to provide the best possible healthcare.  Here is some additional information on the importance of increasing our cultural competency and how we can further our knowledge on the subject.
Why is cultural competence important?
Cultural competency, especially in the healthcare setting is essential.  It means knowing the people you are caring for and working with people on a more individual level. Cultural competence can help you understand how a person could view their healthcare, medication, treatment, etc. and how they could best receive the information you are providing to them.  Practicing cultural competence can ultimately help improve health care quality and outcomes of treatment.
How can I obtain more cultural competence?
Cultural competence is a process and not something that can be fully obtained in one training, or reading one book or talking with one person.  It is something that develops and can increase over time.  While ongoing training, books and different exposures are important and can increase our cultural competence.  Having discussions about culture with other people can also be informative as well as trying different cultural foods or traditions.  Try talking with your peers and other coworkers and get creative on ways you can work together to increase your cultural competency.
Information was sourced from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC):

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