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Multicultural Health

Multicultural Health

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Published by: August Weinberg Rush on Jun 20, 2012
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02/05/2015

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Multicultural Health
Journal of Rehabilitation,Oct-Dec, 2010byJohn L. Garland L. A. Ritter & N. A. HoffmanJones & Bartlett PublishersAs the United States moves toward a majority of its citizens belonging to one ormore minority groups, cultural competence among helping and healthcareprofessionals has become a necessary and ethical component of our training andpractice. Today's diverse culture requires that helping and healthcare professionalsare knowledgeable of others beyond their own community and cultural group.Multicultural Health provides a well-organized compendium of concepts and theoriesgrounded by case studies that highlight ethnic and cultural group health issues andpractices. Regardless of one's healthcare or helping profession focus, MulticulturalHealth is, as the authors explain, not intended to be a panacea but rather abeginning point for helping readers along their journey toward increased culturalcompetence. Both authors are faculty in the Nursing and Health Sciencesdepartment at California State University, East Bay.The text is divided into three units for organizing the authors' broad topic. The firstunit includes a well-written foundation for informing the reader about importantcomponents of health care considerations across the United States' diverse culturalgroups. These components include basic information on terms and concepts relatedto culture and race. This introductory unit also includes topics related to health careaccess, outcomes, and disparities that are often connected to a disability. Theauthors do a nice job of integrating broad ethnic belief systems and practices in thecontext of contemporary health care. They present evidence-based material in anon-paternalistic fashion that should appeal to students, faculty, and practitionersalike. This is especially evident in their chapter on legal and ethical issues where thechapter is presented as a tool chest of resources rather than a simple reporting oflaws and ethical standards often found in similar texts.U.S. history is often told from a Euro-American perspective in textbooks and overtime many textbooks have simply tacked-on chapters related to civil rightsmovements and struggles rather than integrating their content throughout the texts.Thus, we frequently find the histories of non-White, non-heterosexual, and non-citizen experiences presented as add-on chapters. This approach to informing ourmulticultural understanding seems to compartmentalize, rather than integrate, ourmulticultural history and understanding of others. When it comes to understandingspecific health care needs of certain racial, cultural, regional, sexual, gender, andethnic populations within a diverse society, however, separate chapters are oftenhelpful with initial learning. The second unit of the text tends to walk in both of theseworlds. Unit Two's chapters are presented across the primary racial and ethnicgroups found in the United States today with a culminating catch-all chapter titled"No ethnic Populations: Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender (LGBT)Individuals; Migrant Farm workers." Certainly these last groups are also representedamong all the racial/ethnic populations discussed in the preceding chapters, which

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