The concept of cultural and linguistic competency has become a critical focus as healthcare services face growing issues of healthcare disparities and inequities. Effective communication is one of the most important tools to reaching cultural competence. Acknowledging that language and cultural barriers hinder good healthcare outcomes is the first step in addressing these inequities. The National Standards for Culturally and Linguistically Appropriate Services in Healthcare (CLAS) are a set of standards developed by the Office of Minority Health of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services to establish a guide for healthcare organizations to develop and sustain culturally and linguistically appropriate services
In this module we will explore the ways in which culture has an impact on healthcare. We will discuss the interpreter's role as a cultural mediator and look at examples of when it is appropriate to act as a cultural broker. Interpreters will learn about CLAS and how the standards relate to the Joint Commission Standards. Lastly, students will gain tips on how to develop cultural awareness and a cross-cultural mindset.
“Of all the forms of inequality, injustice in health care is the most shocking and inhumane.”
-Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.