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Cultural Perspectives in Public Health 

Cultural Perspectives in Public Health
Chapter:
Cultural Perspectives in Public Health
Author(s):

Barry A Bleidt

, Carmita A Coleman

, and Peter D Hurd

DOI:
10.1093/med/9780190238308.003.0006
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date: 20 October 2018

In order to deliver effective health care and public health services, an awareness of and appreciation for culture’s influence on the social determinants of health is fundamental. In addition, culturally competent delivery of care is a primary contributor to reducing the more expansive concern of health disparities. This chapter defines culture, including its role and influence as a social determinant of health, and discusses the concepts of cultural awareness and cultural competency, which are the foundation of a patient-centered approach to better health outcomes and wellness. It also discusses the status of cultural consideration in health care as a public health problem and presents the need for culturally competent service delivery, along with an exploration of what is involved in the cultural-integration journey.

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