cross-cultural training significance

When the world becomes more complex, health care professionals must be professional in order to communicate with, diagnose, and manage their culturally diverse patients. Racial and tribal inequalities in health must be recognized in every country, as recent statistics indicate a rise in the number of minorities’ mortality rates. Health care practitioners must take more responsibility for the health of individuals from diverse backgrounds (PR, 2013). A person’s culture gives one the direction, and it is the most influential factor to determine their health beliefs. It is vital to be aware of and respect the cultures of different people before any engagement with them. This study investigated the contribution made by the cross-cultural training to the health section and the importance of the training to the medical professionals.

Culture is seen as an integrated pattern of learned beliefs and behaviors that are shared among a group of people. It explains how we shape and define our values. Cross-cultural medicine has been a topic of concern recently, but the issue has been talked of since the 1960s. In the 1970s, the seminal work of Kleinman et al. (2014) solidified the importance of the link between culture and the health care provided. In the 1980s and 90s, the focus shifted to cultural competence.

Cross-cultural education is considerably crucial for the professionals because it meets the health needs of the growing and diverse population. The training will also improve the provider-patient communication and eliminate the ethnic differences in the medical sector today. These standards are general in their language, but they are expanded in more details.

The different social meaning of the human biological material, the placenta in particular shows an example of how the providers consider culture. Most people assume that the organic material can be quickly discarded and not be accountable for the social meaning. The material is crucial for facilitating connection of an individual to a community thus creating an identity. The training is accompanied by various benefits to the health care providers (Bassey & Melluish, 2013). It develops an awareness among people that lack a common cultural framework thus providing clear lines of communication and better relationships.

People learn about themselves during these trainings. One is exposed to information about their culture they previously did not know. Consider the human placenta as an example. When people think the biological to be a waste and therefore will quickly dispose of it, in cultures like in Malaysia, the tissue is considered as a companion of the child during its nine-month stay in the womb. The idea of viewing the placenta as a waste while the biological material is a valuable resource to other cultures shows the importance of cultural interpretation of the human organic material.

This study shows that the training breaks down the barriers between people created by their preconceptions and prejudices that obstruct the understanding of other people’ culture. The breaking of the barrier between the healthcare profession and the patient will allow open dialogues between the two as the patient feels that the expert is aware of the importance of his culture (Dietz, et al., 2017). The type of interpretation offered by the doctor is paramount if they intend to satisfy the patient’s needs.

The study further highlights the importance of the educative role brought about by the training (Alexis, Martin & Zhang, 2017). Education purpose is achieved by the frequency of culture in the human interactions. The training is transformative in nature. Many practitioners view it as the development of cultural understanding and competence that is a lifelong process.

The training has enabled the professionals to develop interpersonal skills applicable in all lifestyles. By learning about the influence of culture on a person’s behavior, they begin to deal with individuals with a degree of the required sensitivity and understanding that may have previously been lacking.

Cross-cultural training has seen a rise in the number of low literate people accessing health care as opposed to the previous years with personnel inadequate in practice. According to the study, the majority of the population that lacked the literacy skills for daily functioning would opt not to seek medical attention (Kostaga, 2015). The minorities are also one of the groups rated low in their literacy levels, due to the cultural and language barrier. Illiteracy would, therefore, affect the patient’s ability to read and comprehend the instructions on the prescription. Such a group will choose for self-medication than go to a place using a language oblivious to them.

Cultural competence has led to customer satisfaction. Consider people with chronic diseases requiring more health services and thus the need for the health care provider to interact more with the patient as compared to the rest of patients. The study shows that an organization whose system is to work together to provide a culturally competent environment, patients show positive health consequences and are more satisfied with the work given to them (Milberg, Torres & Agard, 2016). The minorities are reported to show less partnership with the physicians and therefore have lower levels of satisfaction with the care provided by the doctors.

The trained is also reported to develop the listening skills of the health care providers. Listening is an element that is efficient and provides good communication between the people. It has enabled people to understand how to listen, what to listen to and how to interpret it in a broader framework of understanding. A health care profession should be completely competent in the local understanding of the issues of testing, stigma and treatment. The placement of judgment not only hinders the health care process but could prove to be counterproductive if its detrimental to the health of the patient.

In conclusion, there is necessity for the workers to taking into account the local cultures as it one of the most vital aspects for shaping the value of interaction with patients. Understanding a culture will provide knowledge on how one can link people’s belief into interventions required to access the effect of an illness (Leah & Iuditm, 2016).for the relationship between the doctor and the patient to be a successful one the Information should be shared to accommodate the cultural understanding of the term sickness. Sensitive issues should be delivered in such a way that it relates to the reality of the people. A person should be able to harness the work from the context, which relates to the practices and beliefs that core to the area. Its only through this fundamental understanding that a patient can receive the optimal care accompanied by effective assistance and of the physicians to the people.



Bassey, S., & Melluish, S. (2013). Cultural competency for mental health practitioners: a selective narrative review. Counselling Psychology Quarterly, 26(2), 151-173.

Dietz, J., Fitzsimmons, S. R., Aycan, Z., Francesco, A. M., Jonsen, K., Osland, J., & … Boyacigiller, N. A. (2017). Cross-cultural management education rebooted. Cross Cultural & Strategic Management, 24(1), 125-151. doi:10.1108/CCSM-01-2016-0010.

Kotsaga E. CROSS-CULTURAL TRAINING AS CRITICAL FACTOR OF CULTURAL INTELLIGENCE IN THE HOSPITALITY INDUSTRY. Tourismos [serial online]. Autumn/Winter2015 2015;10(2):213-222. Available from: Hospitality & Tourism Complete, Ipswich, MA. Accessed May 2, 2017.

Leah, C., & Iuditm, V. (2016). Dimensions of Cross-Cultural Awareness. Scientific Journal Of Humanistic Studies, 8(14), 88-91.

Milberg, A., Torres, S., & Ågård, P. (2016). Health Care Professionals’ Understandings of Cross-Cultural Interaction in End-of-Life Care: A Focus Group Study. Plos ONE, 11(11), 1-14. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0165452.

PR, N. (2013, February 21). Pharmaceutical Leader Boehringer Ingelheim Selects Republica as Cross-Cultural Marketing Agency. PR Newswire US.

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