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WHAT LATINA PATIENTS DON’T TELL THEIR DOCTORS

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

WHAT LATINA PATIENTS DON'T TELL THEIR DOCTORS
In-depth interviews with 28 Latina women living in Brooklyn revealed six factors that enhance or inhibit Latinas' disclosure of information to their physician

November 25, 2008, Brooklyn, New York…A new Lutheran Family Health Centers research study, focused on Latina patients, found that a warm, trusting, compassionate relationship in which the patient feels respected and truly heard is critical for disclosure of important health information.

Time constraints, the presence of translators, sex and age differences, and physicians' lack of awareness of what constitutes sensitive issues for Latinas can all affect this relationship and thus disclosure. Notably, birthplace (foreign or U.S. born) also played a role in how the women perceived barriers to disclosure.

To improve Latinas' disclosure of important health information to their physicians, the authors call for staff training in techniques for building rapport in an attempt to foster better communication, increase empathy and compassion and lead to the establishment of trusting relationships.

The study can be seen in more detail in the November/December 2008 issue of the Annals of Family Medicine.


What Latina Patients Don't Tell Their Doctors: A Qualitative Study
By Kell Julliard, M.A., et al
http://www.annfammed.org/cgi/reprint/6/6/543

Lutheran HealthCare and its affiliates are nationally recognized as leaders in cultural competence. The medical system's commitment to culturally sensitive care represents an unparalleled understanding of ethnic, cultural and religious standards and observances that provide patients with the comfort needed for healing and recovery. Acknowledging Brooklyn's diversity, Lutheran has integrated cultural competency with superior health care by being one of the first to provide Islamic prayer rooms and mosques, directional signage in English, Spanish, Chinese, Arabic, and Russian, multilingual patient representatives, and appropriate menu options for Latino, Chinese, Muslim and Jewish patients.

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