Why Is Diversity Important In Healthcare – Diversity is critical to providing quality health care. This allows health care providers to implement thoughtful, fair, and consistent care delivery strategies. As the nation’s racial and ethnic demographics continue to evolve toward a more diverse population, it will become increasingly important for nurse leaders to recognize, respect, and support diversity in their approach to health care delivery.
To learn more, check out the infographic below created by Bradley University’s online Doctor of Nursing Practice program.
Why Is Diversity Important In Healthcare
The country’s growing diversity means the healthcare industry cannot maintain the status quo. Developing strategies to meet the needs of this diverse population will be critical to achieving the goal of providing optimal care that can improve outcomes for all patients.
Pcd’s Commitment To Diversity, Equity, And Inclusion
The United States is projected to have 18.6 million people by the end of the decade. The population itself will age during this time. In 2020, 74 million people were under 18 years of age, and 56.1 million people were 65 years of age or older. By 2030, these numbers are expected to rise to 75.7 million and 73.1 million, respectively. It is estimated that by 2030, people over 65 will make up 21% of the country’s population.
The country is predicted to become not only older, but also more diverse. In 2020, the US population was 61.6% white, 18.7% Hispanic, 12.4% black, and 6% Asian. By 2030, the US population is projected to be 55.8% white, 21.1% Hispanic, 13.8% black, and 6.9% Asian. By 2060, the population mix is projected to be 44.3% white, 27.5% Hispanic, 15% black, and 9.1% Asian. The latest projection means that white Americans will be a minority compared to the combined percentage of other population groups.
Unfortunately, a large percentage of non-white Americans often fare worse than their white peers in terms of overall health and health care coverage, access and use. Research shows that 45% of blacks fall into this disparity, as do 39% of Hispanics, 34% of American Indians and Alaska Natives, 20% of Native Hawaiians and Other Pacific Islanders, and 13% of Asians.
These differences are due to several indicators. While coverage, access, and utilization of health services are prominent indicators of these disparities, health status, health outcomes, health behaviors, and social determinants of health also play a primary role.
Zero Barriers To Equity
The healthcare industry is currently struggling with racial representation. It is extremely important to resolve this situation from the patient’s point of view. A 2020 pre-pandemic data report found that patients were more likely to give higher ratings to doctors who were the same ethnicity and/or gender.
A 2021 Gallup poll asked respondents how difficult it is to find doctors of the same ethnicity. According to the survey, 57% of whites found it very easy, compared with 28% of Hispanics and 17% of blacks. Conversely, 35% of blacks and 24% of Hispanics found it difficult to find doctors of the same ethnicity, compared with only 8% of whites. Additionally, 18% of blacks and 15% of Hispanics reported having very difficulty finding doctors of the same ethnicity, compared with just 5% of whites. The only consistent pattern, according to the survey, was the percentage of people who found it fairly easy to find doctors of the same ethnicity (28% white, 31% Hispanic, 28% black).
As of 2018, studies have shown that doctors are predominantly white, representing 56.2% of the profession. The ethnic composition of the rest of the physician population was as follows:
Promoting diversity in healthcare is critical because it provides a number of benefits to patients. These benefits include reducing disparities in care, improving and optimizing care delivery, and improving access to care.
Societal Factors That Influence Health
Cultural competence consists of attitudes, behaviors, and policies that promote equal performance in cross-cultural scenarios. Culturally competent care benefits both patients and health care providers.
Healthcare institutions that practice high cultural competence recognize the critical nature of culture. They also integrate assessments of cross-cultural connections. In addition, they recognize the potential impact of cultural differences and strive to expand their cultural knowledge. Finally, they tailor their services to meet unique cultural needs.
Building a strong foundation of cultural competency provides several benefits. These benefits include increased patient safety, improved communication, reduced costs and improved patient outcomes.
Effective cultural competence is defined by several fundamental principles. Some of these principles include establishing the concept of culture through a broad definition, understanding the value of the patient’s cultural beliefs, and recognizing the complexity of linguistic interpretation. These principles also involve various forms of collaboration, such as facilitating learning between service providers and communities, collaborating with other agencies, and involving the community in identifying, assessing, and addressing service needs. Additional principles include professional staff selection and training and the integration of cultural competency throughout the institution.
Equity & Diversity Resources
Despite their benefits, cultural competency strategies that champion diversity, equity, and inclusion have not been fully recognized. In the 2021 Relias survey, 62% of respondents said they work in healthcare settings that have such strategies in place. Of these institutions, 90% provided training to support these strategies, but only 40% of them made training mandatory for managers.
Nurse leaders are at the forefront of health care delivery and can play a key role in developing diversity strategies that can make equitable, culturally competent approaches to health care delivery standard practice.
Implementing a strong diversity strategy promotes cultural competency and minimizes the risk of unconscious bias. It also strengthens the workforce community. From the patient’s perspective, such strategies reduce feelings of intimidation. It also optimizes patient care, which can potentially improve patient outcomes.
Nurses can be advocates for diversity by developing mentoring programs. They can also combat unconscious biases if they are detected. Additionally, they can look for ways to champion diversity in work interactions and expand the definition of diversity to accommodate inclusivity. Another strategy nurses can use includes finding and joining a community diversity committee.
Advancing Women In Healthcare Leadership: A Systematic Review And Meta Synthesis Of Multi Sector Evidence On Organisational Interventions
Nurses can also strive to create a culture of diversity in the workplace. They can do this by creating an internal diversity committee or action group. They can also develop training programs that promote intercultural understanding. Finally, it is extremely important for them to lead by example.
More variety means better patient care. Nurse leaders can lead the way in embedding these values in health care settings to ensure more consistent quality care for all and shape the future of the nation’s health care system.
Get information about the benefits of our programs, the courses you’ll take, and what you need to submit. As healthcare professionals, we see patients from all walks of life every day. Our responsibility is to provide everyone with the best health care possible, regardless of their socioeconomic background, religion, culture, race, ethnicity, gender or sexual orientation. This may be misinterpreted as providing everyone with the same health care, which is not always the case. We must consider their customs and beliefs to provide culturally sensitive care. Embracing diversity in healthcare can ensure an unbiased and inclusive approach to healthcare for everyone.
Why is diversity important in healthcare? If the entire health care system was made up of people who looked the same and believed the same things, then there would never be any new ideas, inventions, or progress. Additionally, it may prevent those who do not look the same or believe the same things from seeking medical help for fear of being misunderstood or mistreated.
Managing A Diverse Healthcare Workforce
Diversity in healthcare is essential for both healthcare providers and patients. This not only ensures inclusivity for all, but can also reduce health inequalities. As healthcare professionals, we have a responsibility to recognize the dangers of limited diversity in healthcare and to promote a more diverse healthcare environment.
Advantis Medical values inclusion for all and a culture of diversity. We are your source for achieving your professional goals.
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Why We Need More Diversity In Nursing
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Despite more than a decade of efforts to aggressively recruit and retain a more diverse physician workforce, progress remains inequitable. Although there are now more women than men enrolled in medical schools, black or African American, Hispanic or Latino, and American Indian or Alaska Native students make up only a small portion of the student body. For example, in 2018, only 7.1% of medical school applicants identified as Black or African American; 6.2% were Hispanic, Latino, or Spanish in origin; and 0.2% were American Indian or Alaskan.