Tips for Busy Practices
The delivery of culturally effective and linguistically appropriate health care services is integral to high quality of care. The added time demands that may be associated with pediatricians' unfamiliarity with a specific culture or language can be minimized or managed by:
- Having a diverse clinical, nursing, and administrative staff that is reflective of the local patient population and can potentially serve as cultural brokers
- Becoming familiar with local community-based organizations that can serve as a valuable resource for specific areas of need such as interpretive services
- Adding a few key questions to the medical history questionnaire (Has the patient or parent consulted a traditional healer or used medicines/herbs that the pediatrician did not prescribe? What does the patient/parent believe is the cause of the illness?)
- Considering group visits of monolingual or limited English proficient parents, families, and patients as an option to minimize interpreter-associated expenses
- Anticipating and allowing for extra time that may be necessary with interpreter-assisted patient encounters
Community partnerships and resources are instrumental in helping pediatricians deliver culturally effective care to diverse patient populations. For example, partnerships and programs developed or enhanced through AAP-supported Community Access to Child Health and Healthy Tomorrows Partnership for Children Program grants can provide the infrastructure, partners, and venues to collaboratively address persistent diversity-related challenges and explore opportunities for practice improvement. Likewise, community-immersion or community-centered educational experiences for trainees and pediatricians alike can increase cross-cultural awareness and understanding.
Organizational and Individual Cultural Assessment Tools
In a new or existing pediatric practice, it is helpful to understand and quantify the individual pediatrician's or practice's readiness to provide culturally effective care to diverse populations. There are multiple self-assessment and organizational assessment tools that are helpful not in "grading" the pediatrician or practice but in identifying opportunities for professional development or practice improvement.
Chapter 8 Tools and Resource
Tool 8A: National Center for Cultural Competence:
This website includes a listing of self assessment tools, as well as other resources to support health care providers in promoting and sustaining cultural and linguistic competency.
Tool 8B: Healthy Roads Media:
Patient Education Materials in Multiple Languages
These general health education materials are available in multiple languages.
Tool 8C: Health Resources and Services Administration:
Culture, Language, and Health Literacy
This website provides a variety of tools and resources related to health literacy and cultural competency for health care providers.
Tool 8D: National Quality Forum:
Endorsing a Framework and Preferred Practices for Measuring and Reporting Cultural Competency
This report provides a framework and 45 practices to guide health care systems in providing care that is culturally appropriate and patient centered. The comprehensive framework for measuring and reporting cultural competency covers issues such as communication, community engagement, and workforce training.