Transcultural Concepts in Nursing Care


Part Three Healthcare Systems

spreading and may be associated with intrave nous drug use. Culturally relevant drug treat ment programs should be implemented that address both the drug use problems and HIV/ AIDS which can be associated with intravenous drug use. However, people seeking treatment programs for cocaine addiction may encounter barriers that seem insurmountable. Treatment programs may not be available in many areas, and childcare facilities may not be provided, even in day-treatment programs. Thus, persons living in a rural area with children may not be able to find a treatment center that meets their needs. If they seek admittance to a residential treatment program, they might have to agree to place their children in foster care. The Future of Nursing 2020-2030 suggests that promoting health and well-being has been an essential role of nurses—they are bridge build ers and collaborators who engage and connect with people, communities, and organizations to ensure people from all backgrounds have what they need to be healthy and well. ( The Future of Nursing 2020-2030: Charting a Path to Achieve Health Equity ). Family Systems Because the family is the basic social unit, it pro vides the context in which health promotion and maintenance are defined and carried out. The nurse can recognize and use the family’s role in altering the health status of a family member and in supporting lifestyle changes. This requires an appreciation of the role of the family in health care. A family’s problem-solving techniques are used to address health issues, including health promotion, and chronic and terminal illness. Immigrant and refugee families also tend to have strong extended ties with their kin, and changes in lifestyle, diet, and other established patterns of daily life that influence health status will need the understanding and support of all family members.

Coping Behaviors Clients often have distinct, culturally based behaviors to cope with illness as well as to maintain and promote health. These behav iors may be traced to the health–illness para digms discussed in Chapter 4. Beliefs about hot and cold, yin and yang, and harmony and bal ance may underlie actions to prevent disease and maintain health. Community nurses must understand their clients’ cultural values and beliefs to correctly assess clients’ understand ing of health and illness. These assessment data serve as the basis for planning health guidance and teaching strategies that incorporate cul tural beliefs and practices in the nursing care plan. It seems likely that clients in the process of coping with illness and seeking help may involve a network of persons, ranging from family members and select laypersons, as well as healthcare professionals. Seeking social support is often a means of cop ing. Social support varies widely across people, cultural groups, and circumstances. An individ ual’s coping behaviors during a personal or fam ily member illness may differ remarkably over the course of time from diagnosis until resolu tion depending on intrapersonal, interpersonal, and environmental factors. Nurses working with diverse cultural populations understand how coping styles are used by individuals and family members and how they are often influenced by culture.

Lifestyle Practices Lifestyle is the typical way of life of an individual, group, or culture. Cultural influences that shape lifestyles have a significant impact on such health promoting practices as diet, exercise, and stress management. Community health nurses should assess the implications of diet planning and teach ing for clients and family members who adhere to culturally prescribed practices concerning foods. Copyright © 2023 Wolters Kluwer, Inc. Unauthorized reproduction of the content is prohibited.

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