Cultural diversity has a significant influence in our society being the main foundation of multiculturalism. Different countries has their own heterogeneous cultures that composed of diverse qualities involving language, race, ethnic group, beliefs, social background, etc., interactions of which impact several aspects of the society that could cause disarray if not addressed accordingly. This also affects the health care system since majority of the health professionals as well as the patients originated from various cultural background. Recognition, comprehension, and acceptance of the cultural differences provide better outcome in bridging the gap to promote a homogenous society.
According to an article cited in Ausmed Education, health professionals should render a culturally-appropriate and culturally-sensitive care when attending to patients (AUSMed Education, 2016). At times, this could be a challenging task for them as they need to consider the standard medical practices and perform within the framework. Therefore, it is important to distinguish one’s individual perception and preference as a form of respect to others. For instance, as a part of their belief Jehova’s Witnesses forbid blood donation and/or transfusion of all blood products. There are certain belief or tradition that can affect with the decision making of a patient, subsequently, can interfere with the medical management.
In this case, it is critical that a health professional acknowledges the patient’s preferences regardless of the policy. Understanding their cultural background and preferences through effective communication can individualised their needs which can overcome barriers and other difficulties dependent on cultural difference. Relating to effective communication, this is essential in one organisation because it reinforces a culturally-diverse environment through collaborative efforts of health professionals in delivering quality health care services that support the social needs of patients. Nurses have a direct encounter in cross-cultural interactions, aside from patients are variety of health professionals such as physicians, pharmacists, social workers, etc.
Awareness of this diversity equips them to integrate the link from the patients to other health team member which contributes to a positive health outcome for all involved. On the other hand, lack of diversity awareness adversely affects patient health outcome.