Blog, Live Events November 25, 2021

Cultural Competence 101 for the Chiropractor Part 5

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Hello, this is Dr. Charmaine Herman here again for the 5th part of cultural competence, 101 for the chiropractor. I’m excited to be here again and thank you to get the chiropractor care we’re going to ahead and get started. So today we’re actually going to move into different applications for being cultural competent. So those of you who remember me from our previous meetings again, I’m Dr. Charmaine Herman and I am, um, the professor at Life University, as well as practicing chiropractic in Alpharetta, Georgia. Um, again, today, our goals are going to be pretty clear. I’m going to go ahead and review some key points from our previous meetings and our previous class. And I’m also going to talk about how do we apply cultural competence to a contracting practice. I want to give you two ways in which you can do that. So if remember, we talked about culture as being the whole person, the religious holidays, the arts, the clothing, the foods, everything that makes up an individual, as well as some hidden, hidden characteristics, such as how people feel about, um, modesty and communications skills and things like that that make everyone different, but everyone has their own culture and culture.

It compresses the entire person.

We talk about cultural competence in health care. We, as doctors of chiropractic, we’re under trying to understand how the, um, social, as well as cultural beliefs of individuals can definitely change how they see health and how they see healthcare, how they approach us as doctors of chiropractic. That’s a big part of what people look at their culture and how does it relate to the chiropractic culture? Because we as chiropractors, we have our own culture on philosophy, but people as they have their own cultures, want to know how to understand chiropractic and they have to understand it on the basis of where they’re coming from their own culture. So culturally being cultural competent as a healthcare provider is understanding how these social, as well as cultural differences can affect how people feel and believe about what chiropractic is and what we can do for them as doctors of chiropractic.

So we also discussed bias and biases that inclination towards prejudice for, or against persons or groups based upon, um, ideas and concepts. Just what we’re trying to think about being fair. We do have prejudices against and for certain things. So when we talk about a bias, that’s a big part of who we are as part of our culture as well. We talked about that bias is something that we actually through our interactions on experiences with individuals, our brain has a way of taking those, that 11 million pieces of information that comes toward it and putting things in categories. So our experience is actually build bias. So things that we’ve seen heard from our parents, our families, our religious beliefs, things that we see on the media and on our phones, advertising, things like that, all helped to shape our bias and who we are as envisioned individuals bias can be definitely unconscious.

Whether we have an affinity bias, which is where we believe people that come from our communities or live where we live or look like us, have we have an affinity towards them. We’re drawn to them. W we, we actually embrace them more than people that are not from our communities. So common practice tend to have their own culture. And we, when we get together, we tend to relate to each other as chiropractors. So that’s an affinity bias that we have for one another, but then there’s also perception biased, and those are stereotypes. And, um, various, um, ideas that we set up based upon things that we’ve heard, learned about other groups on other people and what they do and how they are as part of our, we call perception bias. And then there’s a halo effect that everyone from a particular culture or a particular neighborhood, a particular idea is great.

They’re all, everyone is angelic. They never do anything wrong. We call that a halo effect and we talk about unconscious bias. And then there’s also confirmation bias, the desire to be around people that only think like ourselves and never try to move outside of that small sphere of influence with just people who think like us and don’t change their ideas at all. So we can keep our ideas the same as well. So that’s what we call confirmation bias and biases can form stereotypes, which is usually an overgeneralization of a group of people or concepts based upon a small interaction. So again, in this day, this illustration, if I met older people, an older person who was very much computer illiterate and had difficulty learning how to use a phone and things like that, and I can make an overgeneralization or stereotype that all older people, um, are slow of wits and cannot understand technology.

And it’s a waste of time to give them technology because they’ll never understand, but again, that’s having interaction with just one person. And from that one interaction, you can, over-generalize the entire group based upon that. So that’s what we call stereotypes. We also see profiling as part of that as well with certain people we watch closer because we’ve got this overgeneralization of there, that group of people, what they’re possible possibly going to do. So again, stereotypes or profiling is something that we adapt in our culture. And again, we get that a lot from what we hear and see in the media and things such as that.

So if we want to be able to manage our biases, it’s really better to try to understand them whether they come from, um, take a self assessment to understand how did I get biased in these areas? There are a lot of self-evaluations that you can do to see where your biases lie. Um, in addition to that, you have to choose not to be biased, especially when it comes to treating people fairly like being a doctor of chiropractic. I mean, I may have a bias against people with purple hair and piercings and tattoos. I mean, if that’s my bias and I need to, those folks come into my practice, I have to put that bias aside. So I can be fair as a doctor of chiropractic and treat them as a patient who needs my care. Um, I also need to utilize trainings and skills such as this, so I can learn how to come out of my shell, how to understand other cultures, maybe interact in communities.

I’ve never interacted before, actually step out to actually try to experience other cultures and meet people from those other cultures. So I can become better equipped to work with the communities, especially as our communities are becoming more and more diverse, which is the census says a census says for 2050, that the U S will be a much more diverse community, which almost more than 50% of our communities being what we call, not emerging minorities and not actually minorities, but almost 50% of our population will be a current minority population. So again, one is step out wanting to understand one, to make those choices, to be a better rounded human being and a better rounded doctor of chiropractic.

So when it comes to being culturally competent, excuse me, one size does not fit all. I need to realize that some of my patients need different types of care, different kinds of management. I have much, many older patients and I’m very slow with them. I write things down for them. I do everything I could to make sure they’re comfortable even getting on the table. I spend more time than if I do with my two or five-year-olds, who just jumped on the table. I realized that one size does not fit all when I communicate with my Asian patients, making sure they understand my Latino patients. So as a doctor of chiropractic, when I want to be culturally competent, I need to realize that one size does not fit all.

So being culturally competent again, means first understanding your own community, learning how to acknowledge for sure, own your own culture and understanding your own culture. Then acknowledging that and respecting other cultures. In addition to that, you want to also go ahead and spend time serving in other cultures, that’s helpful as well, um, refusing to, um, profile or stereotype people based upon assumptions about their cultures, um, be willing to step out of your own shell and learn about other cultures and continue to self evaluate yourself and see that you’re growing and changing as a human being. All of these are ways that a doctor of chiropractic can actually become more culturally competent and better serve their communities and the dementia, many, many diverse communities that are out there in this country.

So how do I apply cultural competence to my practice? That’s always a really important question because Siri is one thing, but application is everything. So I’m thinking about two things that I want to discuss today, discussing how to apply cultural competence to my, my practice as a doctor of chiropractic. Now, first of all, I want to first evaluate my practice, evaluate how I give my chiropractic message or, well, how do I communicate with my community? So I tell people, look at your social media, your advertising, what does it say to that verse communities? Are you having any messages that may be negative towards diverse communities? So take a look at how you share and tweet and like on social media, for example, who or what organizations do you, um, actually, um, like on social media or Instagram, do you, do you send Instagram pictures? What did your pictures look like on Instagram?

Um, when you practice, who do you regularly follow on your social media devices and things like that? People are looking at that when they’re looking for a doctors of chiropractic, looking for everything, people tend to do a little research and they’re looking at who your, your social media sites says you are, what ideas you espouse, what things you think they’re paying attention to very much what you’re saying about who you are just looking at your social media pages, whether Instagram or Twitter or things such as that also your print media, does your print media advertising just show one group of people, um, whether purposely or unintentionally, um, I’ve been to, I work with different organizations and I’m part of different organizations. I always notice whenever we, I get on flyers or print media brochures, they only show one group of people on that, on their flyers, on their brochures. They don’t show a diverse number of people. And that’s the information that people are seeing that you’re closed off from serving a diverse community. When you only use one group in your advertising or in your print media or in your commercials.

So using diverse images, sends a message to diverse communities that you’re open to working with them again, if they see just one group of people on all of your advertising or all of their social media, they’re getting the idea that you don’t want to be bothered with people outside of your, maybe your comfort zone. So again, what messages are we sending when we set up our advertising and social media? What about our office? That’s also some really, really important, well, we have documents in our office in brochures in our office, take a look at them. When you look at your records and things such as that are your new patient documents available in other languages. So if you’re serving a Latino community or you’re serving a Haitian community, do you have any documents in those languages translated in those languages, um, for your patients to utilize when they come into your office? That’s a question I always ask doctors of chiropractic, because again, that shows that you’re, I know we expect people to speak English, and I understand that, but we should understand that some people English as a second language, or they have minimum English capabilities. And that’s something to think about when you organize your paperwork or make your brochures, or have your intake documents.

It’s that people tend to believe that if I’m serving a diverse community, everyone needs to be able to speak English. But the assumption is that people who do not speak English well or lose their second language are also illiterate. That is the assumption that’s made. But what the fact is that most people who do speak other languages or have English as a second language, are very literate in their own language, as well as in their own written language. So by having documents available, that’s in their written language, um, can actually help them filling out paperwork and things like that. A lot more, a lot smoothly instead of you having to explain concepts and they’ll understand what you’re doing. If you have an, if you have documents in their language, and I don’t mean everything in your office, but I’m saying like your intake forms, where you’re taking information and taking data, things like that, that patients can read and fill out. Or even if you have brochures on your wall, it’s helpful to have things in other languages. So people who are in your office can feel more accepted and that you’re open to working with them.

You can also obtain document translators. We, as healthcare providers can actually, or use a translator to translate our documents. And there’s some that are free. Some that are not free. There’s some that are online that you can utilize. Even Google translators can be helpful as far as translating your paperwork into other languages for those communities that you serve predominantly. So again, I don’t mean every language, but again, if you have a predominant Latino community, then you may want to translate some of these documents into Spanish or a specific maybe Cuban or a Dominican, depending on your population that you’re serving. Same thing. If you have a Haitian or a French community, you can get certain documents translated into French or into Creole. So your patients can fill out these papers, this paperwork a lot easier. So there are opportunities for you as a doctor to get documents translated there, they’re out there to help us to do things like that.

So you always want to make sure that you send a message to the community that you are available, open and prepared to serve them. So even if you have patients who are not only, um, English as second language, but also maybe that visually impaired, you can also have documents in braille in your office to serve the visually impaired patient that comes in and may need a little assistance that maybe better understand what to complete and things such as that or things done by on recorder or by recording voices and things like that, to help them to better be served in your community, in your office. So the messages we send based upon the things that we present to our communities, tell them whether or not we are open to being a culturally competent doctor of chiropractic, or if we just, all, we just want to see a certain group of people, people pay attention to those types of messages. So on our next episode, I’m going to talk more about how we can apply cultural competence to the office of chiropractic as a doctor of chiropractic, as well as some of the concepts that are been, I’ve been getting some questions about. So I hope to look forward to seeing you before the end of the year. Um, have a great Thanksgiving. Thank you, ChiroSecure for your time. And thank you also for tuning in, have a great day.