Practice Application Topics of Professional Interest| Volume 109, ISSUE 10, P1678, October 2009

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Navigating Cultural Competency: In Preparation for an Expected Standard in 2010

      The term “cultural competency” has been batted around quite a bit in the health care arena in recent years, but what does it mean and how are cultural groups defined? Unfortunately, the explanation one receives ultimately depends on whom is being asked, as there is currently no agreed-upon definition of what it means to be culturally competent and deliver culturally competent care in any of the medical professions, including dietetics, where diet recommendations must acknowledge cultural needs without making assumptions and where the literature on this subject is not particularly robust (
      • Stein K.
      Cultural competency: Where it is and where it's headed.
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        • Stein K.
        Cultural competency: Where it is and where it's headed.
        J Am Diet Assoc. 2009; 109: 388-394
        • Betancourt J.R.
        Cultural competence and medical education: Many names, many perspectives, one goal.
        Acad Med. 2006; 81: 499-501
        • Wilson-Stronks A.
        • Galvez E.
        Hospitals, Language, and Culture: A Snapshot of the Nation: Exploring Cultural and Linguistic Services in the Nation's Hospitals: A Report of Findings.
        (Accessed April 11, 2009)
        • Thompson A.E.
        Commentary: Those who do not learn from history are doomed to repeat it.
        Acad Med. 2009; 84: 157-158
        • Glod M.
        • Chandler M.A.
        Scores stable as more minorities take SAT.
        (Washington Post. August 27, 2008) (Accessed March 8, 2009)
        • Boutin-Foster C.
        • Foster J.C.
        • Konopasek L.
        Viewpoint: Physician, know thyself: The professional culture of medicine as a framework for teaching cultural competence.
        Acad Med. 2008; 83: 106-111
        • Gregg J.
        • Saha S.
        Losing culture on the way to competence: The use and misuse of culture in medical education.
        Acad Med. 2006; 81: 542-547
        • Rapp D.E.
        Integrating cultural competency into the undergraduate medical curriculum.
        Med Educ. 2006; 40: 704-710
        • Kardong-Edgren S.
        • Campinha-Bacote J.
        Cultural competency of graduating US Bachelor of Science nursing students.
        Contemp Nurs. 2008; 28: 37-44
        • Haack S.
        Engaging pharmacy students with diverse patient populations to improve cultural competence.
        Am J Pharm Educ. 2008; 72: 124
        • DasGupta S.
        How to catch the story but not fall down: Reading our way to more culturally appropriate care.
        Med Educ. 2006; 8: 315-318
        • Harris-Davis E.
        • Haughton B.
        Model for multicultural nutrition counseling competencies.
        J Am Diet Assoc. 2000; 100: 1178-1185
        • Murray-Garcia J.L.
        • Harrell S.
        • Garcia J.A.
        • Gizzi E.
        • Simms-Mackey P.
        Self-reflection in multicultural training: Be careful what you ask for.
        Acad Med. 2005; 80: 694-701
        • Shapiro J.
        • Lie D.
        • Gutierrez D.
        • Zhuang G.
        “That never would have occurred to me”: A qualitative study of medical students' views of a cultural competence curriculum.
        BMC Med Educ. 2006; 6: 31-38
        • Hoehner P.
        The myth of value neutrality.
        Med Educ. 2006; 8: 341-344
        • Glickman S.W.
        • McHutchinson J.G.
        • Peterson E.D.
        • Cairns C.B.
        • Harrington R.A.
        • Califf R.M.
        • Schulman K.A.
        Ethical and scientific implications of the globalization of clinical research.
        N Engl J Med. 2009; 360: 816-823
        • Brownell K.D.
        • Puhl R.M.
        Stigmatized patients' right to equal treatment.
        Med Educ. 2006; 8: 298-302
      1. N.J. mandates cultural competency training.
        (June 1, 2005) (Accessed May 5, 2009)
        • Romana H.-W.
        Is evidence-based medicine patient-centered and is patient-centered care evidence-based?.
        Health Serv Res. 2006; 41: 1-8