Benchmark – Diversity in Health Care Essay

Benchmark – Diversity in Health Care Essay

Benchmark – Diversity in Health Care Essay 150 150 Peter

Benchmark – Diversity in Health Care Essay

Assessment Description

Diversity has a significant influence on health care. Studying transcultural health care helps health professionals understand different cultures in order to provide holistic and individualized health care. Review the Purnell Model for Cultural Competence, including the theory, framework and 12 domains. Write 750-1,000-word paper exploring the Purnell Model for Cultural Competence. Include the following:

1. Explain culturally sensitive care and its application within health care.
2. Explain the theory and organizational framework of the Purnell Model, and discuss its relevance to transcultural health care.
3. Describe Purnell’s 12 domains of culture, and assess how each of these domains plays an active role in the diversity of health care in your specific field.
4. Discuss how this model can be applied when working with different cultures in order to become a more culturally competent health care provider.
5. Cite at least three references, including the course textbook.

Prepare this assignment according to the guidelines found in the APA Style Guide, located in the Student Success Center. An abstract is not required.
This assignment uses a rubric. Please review the rubric prior to beginning the assignment to become familiar with the expectations for successful completion.
You are required to submit this assignment to LopesWrite. A link to the LopesWrite technical support articles is located in Class Resources if you need assistance.
Benchmark Information
This benchmark assignment assesses the following programmatic competency:
BS Health Sciences
1.1 Explain culturally sensitive care and its application within health care.

Sample Paper

Diversity in Health Care 

Culturally sensitive care is providing care in response to the circumstantial and peculiar needs of people from a particular cultural entity. Hence, providing culturally sensitive care requires a keen understanding and appreciation of the clients’ ethnicity and race, religion, language, and nationality. Culturally-sensitive care is crucial to modern healthcare practice in several ways. First, it enhances care quality. When caregivers are culturally sensitive, they develop a deeper understanding of their patients’ needs (Ray, 2016). Hence, they can address the needs more effectively, enhancing patient experience and satisfaction. Culturally sensitivity also improves patient safety (Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, 2019). The connection that culturally-sensitive care providers develop with their clients reduces the risk of miscommunication. Therefore, caregivers are less likely to prescribe or administer harmful medication or interventions erroneously. Additionally, patient self-harm is unlikely to occur since the cultural connection allows the caregiver to comprehend their patient’s physical, mental, and emotional deficits and promptly implement the necessary interventions. Therefore, culturally sensitive care elevates healthcare service provision.

Purnell’s Model

The model is a framework for cultural competence in healthcare settings. It facilitates various aspects of culturally competent care, such as enhancing caregivers’ cultural knowledge, understanding clients’ worldviews, establishing cultural relationships, integrating culture into healthcare, providing a platform for human behavior (such as motivation, meaning, and intentionality), analyzing cultural data, and viewing clients within their ethnocultural context (Purnell, 2018). Thus, the model provides a theoretical framework for healthcare providers to enhance and exercise their cultural competence.

Purnell’s Model is relevant to transcultural healthcare since it harmonizes the cultural disparities that define both caregivers and patients. For instance, a caregiver using the model will be aware that two patients with identical medical needs may attract different interventions depending on their age, ethnicity, and religion. Furthermore, the caregiver will be aware that patients may hold opinions that they do not share and must, therefore, find a way to address the discord to ensure it does not interfere with care service delivery.

The Twelve Domains

Purnell’s Model consists of twelve domains that define a caregiver’s cultural considerations in providing healthcare services. They include overview/heritage, communication, family roles and organization, workforce issues, biocultural ecology, high-risk behavior, nutrition, pregnancy practices, death rituals, spirituality,  healthcare practices, and healthcare practitioners (Purnell, 2018). While the domains’ application is usually integrative, one can assess them individually to determine their contribution to healthcare diversity in a particular setting, such as acute care nursing.

Overview/heritage. A patient’s general background, e.g., economic and migration status, help the caregiver determine the best approaches. For instance, some ideal interventions may be inaccessible to the patient due to cost, and hence one should seek to implement the best affordable alternative.

A common language between patient and caregiver enhances smooth healthcare transitions. If the direct communication medium is missing, the caregiver must still facilitate communication, e.g., using an interpreter.

Understanding family roles helps in building relations with a patient’s relatives. One can direct the appropriate action, such as primary care and motivation, to the right family member, reducing non-adherence.

Biocultural ecology includes inherited medical traits, reactions to drugs, etc. A caregiver must consider the biocultural ecology to enhance patient safety and overall care quality.

High-risk behaviors, such as drug abuse, alcoholism, and high-risk sports, require more than simple medical interventions. Therefore, if an acute care nurse is dealing with a patient with such behavior, they must explore its cultural origins and enablers. Only then will they be effective in assisting the patient in regaining control.

Nutritional trends, including family cuisines, eating disorders, and food perception during illness, influence a patient’s overall health. These habits have a cultural inclination, and hence the caregiver cannot simply demand that the patient change them. Instead, they should understand the importance and cultural significance of these habits and find ways to accommodate them in implementing an intervention.

Understanding pregnancy and childbearing practices will inform the caregiver whenever they are making a decision involving reproductive health. Understanding the cultural significance will assist in making a culturally-acceptable decision.

Death rituals and practices define a patient’s preferred end-of-life experience. Thus, caregivers should be aware of any requirements or taboos should an acute care patient’s condition unexpectedly decline.

Spirituality also has an end-of-life inclination but also encompasses the entire patient experience. For instance, the caregiver should accommodate a patient’s religious beliefs and allow them to practice them to the best of their ability within the acute care setting. For instance, they should avoid interrupting them when praying and may even delay drug administration for a few minutes to accommodate the patient.

Healthcare practices encompass all cultural beliefs and approaches, including complementary and alternative medicine. Caregivers should be knowledgeable in these practices to ensure they can integrate them to enhance satisfaction and healthcare outcomes.

Finally, healthcare practitioner considerations include traditional healers and the primary caregiver’s gender. The healthcare provider should seek to determine whether the patient has any inclinations and preferences and aim to accommodate them accordingly.


The healthcare fraternity can apply Purnell’s model to enhance cultural competence. Individual caregivers can use it to identify essential cultural considerations for various religions, communities, ages, etc., that frequent the facility (Estevan & Ruiz, 2017). Meanwhile, healthcare leaders can use the model to enhance knowledge and develop policies that support cultural inclusivity. Some essential modifications would include providing translators, accommodating the structural needs for different communities and religions, and diversifying the workforce to meet the divergent practitioner needs. Thus, Purnell’s model can help a healthcare facility become culturally competent by enhancing its infrastructure, policies, and personnel.


Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality. (2019, Dec. 27). Cultural Competence and Patient Safety.

Estevan G., & Ruiz, S. (2017). Application of the cultural competence model in the experience of care in nursing professionals Primary Care. Atencion Primaria, 49(9), 549-556. DOI: 10.1016/j.aprim.2016.10.013. PMID: 28610847; PMCID: PMC6876046.

Purnell, L. (2018). Update: The Purnell Theory and Model for Culturally Competent Health Care. Journal of Transcultural Nursing, 30(2), 98-105.

Ray, M. A. (2016). Transcultural caring dynamics in nursing and health care (2nd ed.). F.A Davis.