According to a 1948 United Nations
resolution, health is a universal human
right; however many people in the
To counteract this problem, physicians must learn to practice culturally sensitive medicine; the question then becomes how to approach this change. In their explanatory model, Dr. Arthur Kleinman, Dr. Leon Eisenberg, and Dr. Byron Good proposed a set of eight questions that a practitioner should use to understand the patient’s perspective on his or her health condition. The practitioner’s basic guide explores these questions as they could relate to Latino/a populations in the United States. Through the guide, a practitioner has access to a quick reference that provides a foundation for working with Latino/as. Kleinman’s questions were approached from the point-of-view of a future physician looking for information applicable to practicing medicine. In addition to studying medicine for Latino/a populations, the guide addresses how to use this information during a short medical appointment. Although beneficial, a guide is only a stepping-stone; it can not be used as a rule for all patients. This is the case with the issue of cultural competence. The end of the practitioner’s guide addresses this issue.
As practitioners learn
how to practice culturally sensitive
medicine, the instances of misdiagnosis
and incorrect treatment will decrease.
Increasing numbers of Latino/a
patients will be comfortable seeking
medical care. The
practitioner’s basic guide is a step
toward changing the inequalities that
exist in healthcare.
As a result, health will truly become a
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