Intercultural Competence in the Health Care Workplace
"Intercultural competence must be sought by today’s physicians! While providing care to an
ever changing patient demographic, physicians have got to consider patients’ cultures as they formulate
treatment plans that are accessible, acceptable and appropriate. When we fail to connect with a patient's culture, we fail to treat the whole patient." ~Wesley Robinson-McNeese, M.D., Executive Assistant to the Dean for Diversity, Multicultural and Minority
Affairs, SIU School of Medicine
What challenges and issues have you seen diverse patients bring to the health care workplace?
How prepared and informed are health care professionals on cultural differences among their patients and
How often is the cultural background of the patient overlooked in serving and treating
How often do health care providers reflect on the role of their cultural backgrounds in serving and
treating diverse patients and in working with diverse colleagues?
How many health care providers understand and practice intercultural competence?
"Culture is tightly interwoven into the life of man and woman and continuously pervades
his/her thinking, actions, feelings, and particularly his/her health state." ~
Madeleine Leiniger, Transcultural Nursing Research to Transform Nursing Education and Practice,
"For many years we doctors have been working under the fantasy that if we come up with new
drugs and new treatments, we’re done....In my view, the rocket science in health and health care is how we
deliver it.” ~Dr. Jim Yong Kim, President of Dartmouth College (in an interview with Billy Moyers on PBS
How Culture Impacts Our Daily Human Interactions:
Culture impacts how we think and communicate.
Cultural differences in cognitive and communication styles can lead to misunderstanding, conflict,
litigation, even violence.
Recognizing and understanding cultural differences can improve relationships and interactions, enhance
service and productivity, reduce conflict and litigation, and create a welcoming, inclusive culture for
diverse patients and employees.
Diversity Works, Inc. Workshop:
Explains and illustrates intercultural competence.
Analyzes and demonstrates cultural differences in:
world views and value systems
verbal communication styles
non-verbal communication styles
disclosure of personal information
Uses intercultural competence to examine case studies of intercultural misunderstanding, conflict, etc.
in the health care workplace.
Provides guidelines for acquiring and practicing intercultural competence in the health care workplace.
(in two to four hour formats)
Intercultural Competence Means:
"Mindfulness: being aware of our own assumptions, viewpoints, and ethnocentric tendencies
while simultaneously paying attention to the perspectives and interpretive lenses of dissimilar others."
~Stella Ting-Toomey, Communicating Across Cultures, 1999
For further information about the objectives and activities of each workshop or information on pricing or
scheduling, please contact Pauline Kayes at (217)369-2058 or email@example.com.