We look at the technical components of the organization, such as technological tools, the supply chain, and other factors in order to determine whether the tools for success are actually available. We must have these resources in place before moving forward with more complex theories, such as cultural competence and the integration of new methods (Leininger, 1991; Schaffner et al., 2006). The basis of the organization must be established, where these tools and resources must be in place before we can move forward with new theories, cultural development, and the competencies that have been discussed such as bridging the educational gap. Do the nurses have the tools to succeed? Do they have the technology to treat the patient? These are questions that must be addressed given the internal makeup of the organization, rather than the interpersonal qualities that drive support for the firm, as are being proposed within this project.
Organizations are reliant on consistency and functionality. The aforementioned organizational trends are the result of education, training, interpersonal commitment, and so forth. Without this consistency, however, the organization cannot function as it should (Niles, 2013; Hasmath, 2011). So, a major component of this project is to bring consistency to the care environment to ensure that an organization will function appropriately, and the primary stakeholders (patients and staff) are cared for, respectively.
Causes are driven by a lack of communication. When there is no consistency in communication throughout the care environment, results are going to suffer (Niles, 2013; Hasmath, 2011). Here, the lack of consistency in communication is linked to education. Moreover, failed cultural competence is responsible for this trend, where there are barriers in communication and overall progress. A lack of cultural competence by staff, specifically nurses, becomes a specific organizational background cause. That is, failed cultural competence creates a divide between the nurses, where they are unable to show active communication, which is a vital component of the care environment and leads to long-term success within the firm (Niles, 2013; Hasmath, 2011). A healthcare provider that does not practice both cultural competence and active communication will fail to meet the needs of the patient.
Two nurses treating a patient different because of cultural barriers is a scenario that brings attention to this issue. Consider a Muslim patient treated by a Christian nurse. The Christian nurse is willing to join the Muslim patient in prayer, and the patient is thankful for the care and support. The next evening, a new Christian nurse denies this opportunity, claiming that her Christian belief system would not allow her to pray with a Muslim. Here, the patient is the same and has the same needs. Yet, the response from the nurse is different. This shows that there is a lack of cultural competence in the nursing environment, where this is an example of how patient-centered care is weakened when cultural competence is invalid (Niles, 2013; Hasmath, 2011). There should be consistency in how the nurses approach this situation, where the proposed initiative is to deliver stronger cultural competence throughout the organization.
Education in nursing is deserving of more consistency. Moule (2012) argues that there is an educational gap in this environment, one where nursing students, for example, are learning different measures and not all educated equally. We find that this is a critical issue worthy of both discovery and intervention. If “Nurse A” is receiving education that is of the highest quality, where “Nurse N” is receiving a lower level of education, there is going to be a gap in care. This is a simple formula where more education leads to higher delivery of service and care (Moule, 2012). So, the student audience is not receiving the same level of education, where the end result is weakened patient-centered care.
The gap in education is problematic. Making the transition to the organizational environment, consider Nurse A and Nurse N working at the same place. On Tuesday, Nurse A is treating a patient. On Wednesday, Nurse N is treating the same patient. The patient notices that there is a significant gap in how he was treated today, compared with the night before (Tuesday). This is because Nurse N was not educated the same as Nurse A, where the result is the patient suffering because education is not fluid.
Here, the idea, as proposed, is to bring consistency to education. Nursing students cannot take on different levels of education, just as they cannot expect to function when communication has similar gaps (Moule, 2012). The goal of the proposal is to ensure that the audience, especially the nursing student receives the same information. Now, education is always going to be dynamic and the educational experience will never be identical. Still, the core concepts, competencies, training and instruction, and methods of nursing must be the same. Otherwise, a scenario will exist where the patient receives a lesser level of care depending on the nurse who is treating him.
The target audience consists of the wide nature of stakeholders throughout the care environment. As one thinks of stakeholders within this industry, two will immediately come to mind. These are the patients and the staff, such as nurses. Of course, the target audience is the wider population who may not currently be working for a healthcare provider, or may currently lack access. The goal here is to ensure that all individuals are capable of receiving services, regardless of their background, ethnicity, culture, and so forth.
Proper integration of cultural competence ensures that all are able to receive quality care without limitations. Bridging the gap between those who currently receive quality care, and those who are unable to obtain proper care is a core component of this proposed initiative. Through adequate communication within the care environment, a stronger emphasis on cultural competence becomes viable. Thus, the target audience is dynamic, and can be any stakeholder who is going to find benefit in the short-term, or in the long run as connected with quality care, active communication, and the wider care environment. With that said, the specific target audience would be ethnically-diverse individuals working in the care environment, or those who are seeking care and want to communicate more effectively.
Professional development is enhanced through this proposal. First, higher education means that there will be more thorough implications for care in the long run. The proposed solution looks to change the dynamic of care, for the better. In doing so, the organization finds that there is higher value in training and education. The end result is a more widespread approach to cultural competence on behalf of the nurses and all stakeholders throughout this core environment. Consistency is going to be critical for the profession, where the trends will allow patients to receive an optimal level of care at all stages of practice. The nurse takes on this new role as one who is culturally competent and strong in active communication. Collectively, all of these new principles are going to deliver new value to the patient.
Consistency in education is the proposed solution. Additionally, enhanced training in cultural competence is a connected solution. The educational process is currently too flexible. There are nurses who receive an education that is not aligned with others, even those they are working with in the same company. So, our solution looks to bring a new element of nursing where there is consistency and support. The cultural competencies of nursing are being abandoned due to this lack of consistency. Thus, training will be enhanced. Nurses will be trained under certain guidelines, meaning all nurses are going to receive the same level of support, and consistency in training and communication so that they are able to deliver the quality that is expected by a patient. Here, our solution is proposed to heighten the level of awareness from a social and cultural perspective, bringing consistency to the nursing environment and elevating the response on behalf of the nurses and care providers.
The optimal outcome is two-fold. The initial outcome is increasing education. Specifically, consistency in education is a need for this environment, where the core components of education align with critical value for the participants. In other words, we need to find a way to ensure that there is consistency in how we approach education, where nurses are learning similar methods.
The second outcome is bridging the gap in terms of cultural competence. That is, this gap needs to be narrowed, where nurses are consistent in how they approach situations with patients from various ethnic backgrounds. Consistency in this phase of development ensures that there will be support on multiple levels. In other words, we find that the optimal outcome would be more education on cultural competence, where the results (practice) show that nurses are consistent in how they approach situations with cultural implications. We understand that there will still be flexibility throughout the care environment, and realize that there will be a dynamic approach to how patients are given treatment. Still, upholding this commitment to cultural competence must shine, where the aim is to bring on a new level of cultural competence that is consistent with training methods and appreciation of the core values.
Constantine (2007) finds that African Americans have faced a struggle in the care environment. As an ethnic minority, African Americans face inconsistency in care. Part of our proposed initiative is to look at the ethnic minorities and provide an appropriate level of care, where there is consistency in care. So, the lack of quality care on behalf of the providers toward African Americans is a topic that drives this proposal (Constantine, 2007). The literature shows that there is an uphill battle to obtain care by African Americans, showing a gap in care and cultural competence by the providers who should provide care across-the-board, and not based on one’s culture or ethnic background.
The literature is compelling as there are various views of a similar topic. Leininger (1991) finds that treatment of ethnic groups within the care environment is not consistent. Generally, there will be financial implications that align with treatment. This tells us that the patient is going to be treated based on assumption, or financial merit (Leininger, 1991). This is the inconsistency that places a burden on this care environment, where ethnic minorities without the financial means are going to find that their care is not practical, as compared with others (Leininger, 1991). Continuing this theme, findings show that there is a major disparity in nursing, where the core competencies are often lost when dealing with a minority group, such as African Americans, Muslims, or any that do not fit the majority demographic (and have the financial success).
Counseling is a core component of nursing practice. Arredondo et al. (1996) find that failure to counsel those who feel they have been mistreated by physicians and care providers will have lasting implications. These adverse implications are going to burden the elements of nursing, and care. So, the literature here is speaking to this issue, where ethnic minorities are being treated differently than those who do not have the minority status (Arredondo et al., 1996). Our goal is to bridge this gap, where cultural competence is a valid concern for ethnic minorities, as the literature has suggested. We want to increase awareness on this issue, but also press for change, where the findings of Arredondo are essential a call to action in shaping new developments within the care environment in order to better meet the needs of the patient (Arredondo et al., 1996).
Westmeyer (2004) finds that substance abuse aligned with ethnic minorities takes on a different approach. Specifically, care providers and literature have aligned certain cultures with alcohol and substance abuse (Westmeyer, 2004). Here, cultural competence is lost, where there is a lack of respect for these cultures. Instead, it is assumed that they are abusing drugs or alcohol on behalf of their culture, and do not have a deeper problem. As has been found with the literature focusing on African Americans, blaming the culture instead of looking at the individual is a critical problem. Here, the proposal will wipe out these assumptions, actively communicate with the patient and find a treatment plan for the individual, rather than assuming that the culture leaves him or her hopeless. The literature shows that certain ethnic backgrounds or cultures are treated differently, and may be considered a lost cause (Westmeyer, 2004). Our goal is to overcome these assumptions and ensure that communication and training are consistent, where cultural competence emerges to provide all with the appropriate level of care.
The proposal is dynamic in how it is going to approach the care environment. We know that patient-centered care must be a focus. We also know that the major variables are going to be enhanced training and education for the nurses, more consistency, and a higher level of cultural competence. The role of the individual, however, becomes critical, as the nurses need to take on their expected roles and perform up to the standards that are required in the care environment. Moving forward, implementation of the proposed initiatives will change the landscape of care, where a higher level of competence and enhanced education, as well as more consistency will deliver good news for an environment where there is a major gap.
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