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4.4 Culturally competent health care for people with mental health problems

  • The cultural appropriateness of mental health services may be the most important factor in the accessibility of services by people from different ethnic and cultural groups.
  • Developing culturally sensitive practices can help reduce barriers to effective treatment utilization.
  • Rapport building is a critical component of competency development.
  • Knowing whom the client perceives as a “natural helper” and whom he/she views as traditional helpers (such as elders, the church) can facilitate the development of trust and enhance the individual’s investment and continued participation in treatment.
  • Shifts in ethnic diversity are not just about numbers, but also the impact of cultural differences. New approaches are needed in service delivery to address cultural differences among consumers.
Modified from:

Cultural Competency. A Practical Guide For Mental Health Service Providers. By Delia Saldaña, Ph.D. Hogg Foundation for Mental Health

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