Cultural competence, defined by some as the ability to assess and respond appropriately to differences in culture, is an important competency for healthcare workers in Canada. With changing demographics and immigration patterns, there is more diversity among both healthcare providers and patients than ever before. Race and ethnicity are not the only determinants of culture. Culture is also shaped by age, gender expression, sexual orientation, life experiences, religion and more. Culture is the lens through which we view the world; it is a set of values and beliefs, and must be considered within social, historic and economic contexts. Supporting cultural competence can help improve health outcomes and navigate potential ethical dilemmas.This program reviews the key components of cultural competence, describes different worldviews that may be encountered, and addresses common myths and misconceptions about how to bridge cultural differences in nursing practice.
Salma Debs-Ivall, RN, PhD
Lisa Ashley, RN MEd CCHN(C)
On completion of this program, participants will be better able to:
- Identify the risks contributing to the life expectancy gap experienced by people with serious mental illness.
- Understand the importance of different psychotropic medications in the development of physical comorbidities, predominately metabolic syndrome, type 2 diabetes and cardiovascular disease.
- Conduct appropriate monitoring of patients with serious mental illness to identify and prevent the development of related physical comorbidities.
- Confidently manage the physical consequences of serious mental illness, optimising pharmacological treatment and intervening to reduce other risk factors for disease in this population.