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Healthcare 411 External Web Site Policy

U.S. Health and Human Services, Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (Producer), & Clancy, C. (Director) (2011). Healthcare 411 [Audio podcast]. Retrieved from http://www.ahrq.gov/

Healthcare 411 is an audio podcast series produced by the HHS Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) as part of its effort to improve the quality, safety, efficiency, and effectiveness of healthcare for all Americans. AHRQ launched Healthcare 411 in Spanish to offer news and information on current research and on important healthcare topics to a growing population in our country.

Keywords:    Tools | Clinical & Mental Health | Patients & Consumers | Population-Based | Communication and Language Assistance |

Racial and Ethnic Disparities in Healthcare in California External Web Site Policy

California Office of Statewide Health Planning and Development. (2010). Racial and ethnic disparities in healthcare in California: California fact book. Retrieved from http://www.oshpd.ca.gov/HID/Products/PatDischargeData/ResearchReports/EthnicRacialDisp/RacialEthnic
FactBook_2010.pdf

The State of California conducted a study on racial and ethnic health disparities in 2010. Although the study found improvement in many areas, it also found that significant inequities persist. The authors note that the report provides strong evidence for policymakers, healthcare providers, public health professionals, researchers, and other interested stakeholders to focus efforts on addressing access to and quality of care.

Keywords:    Research | Clinical & Mental Health | Public Health | Patients & Consumers | Governance & Leadership | Government | Population-Based | Quality Improvement | Disparities |

Examining Effectiveness of Medical Interpreters in Emergency Departments for Spanish-Speaking Patients With Limited English Proficiency External Web Site Policy

Bagchi, A. D., Dale, S., Verbitsky-Savitz, N., Andrecheck, S., Zavotsky, K., & Eisenstein, R. (2010). Examining effectiveness of medical interpreters in emergency departments for Spanish-speaking patients with limited English proficiency: results of a randomized controlled trial. Annals of Emergency Medicine, 57(3), 248-256.e4. doi:10.1016/j.annemergmed.2010.05.032

This study, published in the Annals of Emergency Medicine, examines the impact on patient and provider satisfaction of emergency department use of medical interpreters for limited-English-proficient Spanish speakers. The researchers conclude that the use of in-person, professionally trained medical interpreters significantly increases satisfaction with communication during emergency department visits for both Spanish-speaking, limited-English-proficient patients and their health providers.

Keywords:    Research | Clinical & Mental Health | Patients & Consumers | Population-Based | Profession-Based | Communication | Communication and Language Assistance |

HHS launches first of its kind consumer focused website in Spanish External Web Site Policy

HHS launches first of its kind consumer focused website in Spanish. (2010, September 8). U.S. Department of Health & Human Services. Retrieved from http://www.hhs.gov/

The HHS launched CuidadodeSalud.gov, the first website in Spanish of its kind to connect consumers to information and resources that will help them access quality, affordable healthcare coverage. HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius noted that the website "will give Latinos across the nation better information about the choices they have, how much they cost, and what they can expect from their doctor-specific to their life situation and local community."

Keywords:    Tools | Patients & Consumers | Communication | Communication and Language Assistance |

Patient Protection And Affordable Care Act Of 2010: Advancing Health Equity for Racially and Ethnically Diverse Populations External Web Site Policy

Andrulis, D. P., Siddiqui, N. J., Purtle, J. P., & Duchon, L. (2010). Patient protection and affordable care act of 2010: advancing health equity for racially and ethnically diverse populations. Retrieved from Joint Center for Political and Economic Studies website: http://www.jointcenter.org/sites/default/files/upload/research/files/Patient%20Protection%20and%20Affordable%20Care%20Act.pdf

The Joint Center for Political and Economic Studies has published a report detailing the implications of 2010's healthcare reform on health equity. It states that recent healthcare reform legislation offers an unprecedented opportunity to improve health equity in the United States.

Keywords:    Tools | Policy | Clinical & Mental Health | Public Health | Patients & Consumers | Governance & Leadership | Government | Disparities | Governance, Leadership, and Workforce | Communication and Language Assistance | Engagement, Continuous Improvement, and Accountability |

Race, culture may play role in Alzheimer's disease External Web Site Policy

Brophy Marcus, M. (2010, July 14). Race, culture may play role in Alzheimer's disease. USA Today. Retrieved from http://www.usatoday.com/

This article discusses research presented at the Alzheimer's Association International Conference. It examines the effect of racial and cultural differences on Alzheimer's patients' outcomes and the attitudes of their family members. The study finds that more culturally tailored resources could benefit African Americans, Latinos, and other minority groups.

Keywords:    Research | Clinical & Mental Health | Public Health | Patients & Consumers | Governance & Leadership | Government | Disease-Based | Disparities | Governance, Leadership, and Workforce | Communication and Language Assistance | Engagement, Continuous Improvement, and Accountability |

Racial and Ethnic Disparities in Health Care External Web Site Policy

American College of Physicians. (2010).Racial and ethnic disparities in health care, updated 2010. Retrieved from http://www.acponline.org/advocacy/where_we_stand/access/racial_disparities.pdf

The American College of Physicians released a 2010 update to its policy paper, "Racial and Ethnic Disparities in Health Care." It calls for the healthcare system to adapt to meet the needs of an increasingly multicultural patient base. Recommendations include that healthcare professionals need to acknowledge the cultural, informational, and linguistic needs of their patients as our society increasingly becomes more racially and ethnically diverse.

Keywords:    Research | Education & Training | Clinical & Mental Health | Public Health | Patients & Consumers | Governance & Leadership | Government | Population-Based | Health Literacy | Disparities | Governance, Leadership, and Workforce | Communication and Language Assistance |

Irvine's Hoag Hospital works to bridge cultural barriers External Web Site Policy

Reicher, M. (2010, September 8). Irvine's Hoag Hospital works to bridge cultural barriers. Los Angeles Times. Retrieved from http://articles.latimes.com/2010/sep/08/local/la-me-hoag-hospital-20100908

This article details a California hospital's efforts to incorporate culturally competent practices into its services and system. Hoag Hospital in Irvine, CA, took many steps to adapt to its patients' cultural beliefs, traditions, and languages. These preparations include creating patient rooms arranged according to the principles of feng shui, serving steamed rice for breakfast, and using gestures such as presenting documents respectfully with two hands and speaking to patients with more formality.

Keywords:    Tools | Policy | Clinical & Mental Health | Public Health | Patients & Consumers | Governance & Leadership | Government | Population-Based | Communication | Governance, Leadership, and Workforce | Communication and Language Assistance | Engagement, Continuous Improvement, and Accountability |

At Hospitals, New Methods With a Focus on Diversity External Web Site Policy

Santos, F. (2010, September 6) At hospitals, new methods with a focus on diversity. The New York Times. Retrieved from http://www.nytimes.com/

This New York Times article discusses the ways that hospitals nationwide are adopting practices intended to improve care for an increasingly diverse patient population beyond language access services. Making immigrant and minority individuals feel more at ease can translate into improved health outcomes according to health providers.

Keywords:    Tools | Policy | Clinical & Mental Health | Public Health | Patients & Consumers | Governance & Leadership | Government | Profession-Based | Disparities | Governance, Leadership, and Workforce | Communication and Language Assistance | Engagement, Continuous Improvement, and Accountability |

How Well Do Doctors Know their Patients? Factors Affecting Physician Understanding of Patients External Web Site Policy

Street, R. L., & Haidet, P. (2010). How well do doctors know their patients? Factors affecting physician understanding of patients' health beliefs. Journal of General Internal Medicine, 26(1), 21-27. doi: 10.1007/s11606-010-1453-3

This study examines the features of patient-centered care; specifically, a physician's understanding of his or her patients' health beliefs and values. The results indicate that physicians' perceptions of their patients' health beliefs differ significantly from patients' actual beliefs. This study indicates that strategies for increasing physicians' awareness of patients' health beliefs include implementing culturally appropriate patient activation programs.

Keywords:    Tools | Research | Clinical & Mental Health | Patients & Consumers | Communication | Disparities | Governance, Leadership, and Workforce | Communication and Language Assistance | Engagement, Continuous Improvement, and Accountability |

Ending health disparities takes interdisciplinary approach External Web Site Policy

Lewis, C., & Stout, J. (2010). Toothache in US children. Archives of Pediatrics & Adolescent Medicine, 164, 1056-1063. doi:10.1001/archpediatrics.2010.206

In this message from the American Medical Association (AMA) president to all physicians, Dr. Rohack notes that an interdisciplinary approach to patient-centered care may help reduce health disparities by addressing challenges in communication such as low health literacy and medication mismanagement. He commits to helping guide the changes needed to ensure culturally competent patient care. When patients do not understand their medical conditions or what to do to control them, unnecessary healthcare costs only will increase, a situation he notes the AMA is committed to avoiding.

Keywords:    Policy | Clinical & Mental Health | Patients & Consumers | Governance & Leadership | Government | Population-Based | Profession-Based | Disparities | Governance, Leadership, and Workforce | Communication and Language Assistance | Engagement, Continuous Improvement, and Accountability |

Health Disparities Calculator External Web Site Policy

Surveillance Epidemiology and End Results, National Cancer Institute. (2010). Health Disparities Calculator (HD*Calc) [Computer software]. Retrieved from http://seer.cancer.gov/

Surveillance Epidemiology and End Results at the National Cancer Institute has developed a Health Disparities Calculator (HD*Calc), which is a statistical software designed to generate multiple summary measures to evaluate and monitor health disparities.

Keywords:    Tools | Research | Clinical & Mental Health | Public Health | Patients & Consumers | Governance & Leadership | Government | Population-Based | Disease-Based | Disparities | Engagement, Continuous Improvement, and Accountability |

Organ Transplant Program 'mistrust' studied External Web Site Policy

Conte, A. (2010, May 2). Organ transplant program 'mistrust' studied. Pittsburgh Tribune-Review. Retrieved from http://www.pittsburghlive.com/x/pittsburghtrib/

Researchers at the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine have shown that patients who think healthcare providers discriminate against them take more time to get approved for kidney transplant surgery. Blacks are four times more likely than Whites to have kidney failure, but they are less than half as likely to receive transplants from living donors. The lead researcher notes that doctors should identify patients who perceive discrimination in order to help them navigate the process.

Keywords:    Research | Clinical & Mental Health | Patients & Consumers | Population-Based | Disease-Based | Disparities | Governance, Leadership, and Workforce | Communication and Language Assistance | Engagement, Continuous Improvement, and Accountability |

Racial/Ethnic Difference in Early-Life Risk Factors for Childhood Obesity External Web Site Policy

Taveras, E. M., Gillman, M. W., Kleinman, K., Rich-Edwards, J. W., & Rifas-Shiman, S. L. (2010). Racial/ethnic difference in early-life risk factors for childhood obesity. Pediatrics, 125(4), 686-695. doi: 10.1542/peds.2009-2100

A team of researchers in Boston set out to examine racial/ethnic differences in early-life risk factors for childhood obesity. The study finds that racial/ethnic differences in risk factors for obesity exist prenatally and in early childhood. Racial/ethnic disparities in childhood obesity may be determined by factors that operate at the earliest stages of life.

Keywords:    Research | Clinical & Mental Health | Public Health | Patients & Consumers | Government | Population-Based | Disease-Based | Disparities | Governance, Leadership, and Workforce | Engagement, Continuous Improvement, and Accountability |

Improving Patient-Provider Communication: Joint Commission Standards and Federal Laws External Web Site Policy

The Joint Commission (Producer). (2009). Improving Patient-Provider Communication: Joint Commission Standards and Federal Laws [Video]. Available from http://www.jointcommission.org/

"Improving Patient-Provider Communication" is a video created by the Joint Commission along with HHS and the Office for Civil Rights as part of their efforts to eliminate racial, ethnic, and language disparities in healthcare. The video educates healthcare providers in providing language access in healthcare organizations. Language access is critical in providing safe, quality patient care.

Keywords:    Tools | Research | Policy | Clinical & Mental Health | Public Health | Patients & Consumers | Governance & Leadership | Government | Population-Based | Communication | Disparities | Governance, Leadership, and Workforce | Communication and Language Assistance | Engagement, Continuous Improvement, and Accountability |

Study: Many Say Disparities Genetic External Web Site Policy

Study: many say disparities genetic. (2009, October 20). United Press International. Retrieved from http://www.upi.com/Health_News/2009/10/20/Study-Many-say-racial-disparities-genetic/UPI-80281256018232/

A study published in the Social Science Quarterly indicates that a majority of Americans support strategies to reduce healthcare disparities that are caused by social and economic status but believe that racial and ethnic health disparities are genetic. The authors note that the general public's belief that racial disparities have a genetic foundation is troubling because people will resist strategies aimed at eliminating health disparities.

Keywords:    Research | Policy | Clinical & Mental Health | Public Health | Patients & Consumers | Governance & Leadership | Government | Population-Based | Disease-Based | Communication | Disparities | Governance, Leadership, and Workforce | Engagement, Continuous Improvement, and Accountability |

CSMS issues results of health disparities survey External Web Site Policy

CSMS issues results of health disparities survey. (2009, October 28). Connecticut State Medical Society. Retrieved from http://www.csms.org/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=2415&Itemid=222

This article discusses the results of a survey conducted by the Connecticut State Medical Society (CSMS) about physicians' views on ways to reduce disparities in healthcare, including cultural competency training. The results indicate that Connecticut physicians believe they could provide better care to patients of minority communities if they had better access to training. As a result of these findings, CSMS has committed to providing cultural competency training to physicians to help eliminate healthcare disparities in Connecticut.

Keywords:    Research | Policy | Clinical & Mental Health | Patients & Consumers | Government | Profession-Based | Communication | Quality Improvement | Disparities | Governance, Leadership, and Workforce | Communication and Language Assistance | Engagement, Continuous Improvement, and Accountability |

Improving Access to Language Services in Health Care: A Look at National and State Efforts

U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality. (2009). Improving access to language services in health care: a look at national and state efforts. Retrieved from http://www.ahrq.gov/

The issue brief explores national efforts to address language barriers for patients with limited English proficiency. It identifies challenges to delivering language services and highlights successes and implications for future policy as well as activities related to providing language services.

Keywords:    Tools | Policy | Clinical & Mental Health | Patients & Consumers | Government | Population-Based | Communication | Disparities | Communication and Language Assistance |

When the Patient Gets Lost in Translation External Web Site Policy

Chen, P. W. (2009, April 23). When the patient gets lost in translation. New York Times. Retrieved from http://www.nytimes.com/

This article in the New York Times is a firsthand account from a surgeon interacting with limited-English-proficient patients combined with a summary of the literature on the effects of a language barrier on healthcare. Dr. Chen regrets providing inadequate language access services in the interest of expediency. With this awareness, she explains strategies that doctors should use to overcome these challenges and ensure that each patient is receiving equal care.

Keywords:    Tools | Education & Training | Clinical & Mental Health | Patients & Consumers | Population-Based | Communication | Disparities | Governance, Leadership, and Workforce | Communication and Language Assistance |

California's Emergency Preparedness Efforts for Culturally Diverse Communities: Status, Challenges and Directions for the Future External Web Site Policy

Andrulis, D., Siddiqui, N., & Purtle, J. (2009). California's emergency preparedness efforts for culturally diverse communities: status, challenges and directions for the future. Retrieved from Drexel University Center for Health Equality and HHS Office of Minority Health website: http://www.diversitypreparedness.org/

This report conducts a systematic assessment of emergency preparedness programs and initiatives for racially and ethnically diverse communities in California, examining barriers to care as well as opportunities for improvement. While this report focuses on the State of California, it provides a methodological framework that allows for similar assessments to be conducted at national, State, and local levels.

Keywords:    Tools | Research | Public Health | Patients & Consumers | Government | Population-Based | Profession-Based | Governance, Leadership, and Workforce | Communication and Language Assistance | Engagement, Continuous Improvement, and Accountability |

Journal of Health Care for the Poor and Underserved External Web Site Policy

Brennan, V. M. (Ed.). (2009). Journal of Health Care for the Poor and Underserved. doi: 10.1353/hpu.0.0146

The May 2009 issue of the Journal of Health Care for the Poor and Underserved offers a variety of articles that address issues of health disparities and access to care. It highlights medical education issues regarding obstacles and supports for different minority groups during the application process for medical school. It includes a section on immigrant health, which contains articles on a variety of racial and ethnic groups, including Chinese and Latinos.

Keywords:    Research | Policy | Clinical & Mental Health | Public Health | Patients & Consumers | Governance & Leadership | Population-Based | Profession-Based | Disparities | Governance, Leadership, and Workforce | Communication and Language Assistance | Engagement, Continuous Improvement, and Accountability |

2008 National Healthcare Quality & Disparities Reports

U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality. (2009). National healthcare quality report, 2008 (AHRQ Publication No. 09-0001). Retrieved from http://www.ahrq.gov/qual/qrdr08.htm

The AHRQ released 2008's NHQR and NHDR, which present findings on quality of and access to healthcare by measuring trends in effectiveness of care, patient safety, patient centeredness, and more.

Keywords:    Research | Policy | Clinical & Mental Health | Patients & Consumers | Government | Quality Improvement | Disparities | Engagement, Continuous Improvement, and Accountability |

National Pharmacy Benefit Manager to Strengthen How it Provides Language Assistance Services External Web Site Policy

National pharmacy benefit manager to strengthen how it provides language assistance services. (2009, June 15). U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. Retrieved from http://www.hhs.gov/

The HHS announced that Medco, a national pharmacy benefit management company, will significantly improve its language access services for limited-English-proficient individuals. The acting director of the HHS Office for Civil Rights noted that this development will combat health disparities, promote healthcare reform, and improve access to care.

Keywords:    Research | Education & Training | Clinical & Mental Health | Patients & Consumers | Government | Population-Based | Profession-Based | Quality Improvement | Disparities | Communication and Language Assistance |

One Size Does Not Fit All: Meeting The Health Care Needs of Diverse Populations External Web Site Policy

Wilson-Stronks, A., Lee, K. K., Cordero, C. L., Kopp, A. L., & Galvez, E. (2008). One size does not fit all: meeting the health care needs of diverse populations. Retrieved from The Joint Commission website: http://www.jointcommission.org/assets/1/6/HLCOneSizeFinal.pdf

This report provides insight into the ways in which hospitals meet diverse patient needs and reduce health disparities. It examines the challenge that healthcare organizations face when addressing cultural and language issues, and it provides a general framework for developing organizational cultural competence. The report stresses that each hospital is responsible for tailoring an approach to cultural competence that addresses its needs rather than relying on a "one size fits all" solution.

Keywords:    Research | Policy | Clinical & Mental Health | Patients & Consumers | Governance & Leadership | Profession-Based | Quality Improvement | Disparities | Governance, Leadership, and Workforce | Communication and Language Assistance | Engagement, Continuous Improvement, and Accountability |

Racial and Ethnic Disparities in U.S. Health Care: A Chartbook External Web Site Policy

Mead, H., Cartwright-Smith, L., Jones, K., Ramos, C., Woods, K., & Siegel, B. (2008). Racial and ethnic disparities in U.S. health care: a chartbook. Retrieved from the Commonwealth Fund website: http://www.commonwealthfund.org/~/media/Files/Publications/Chartbook/2008/Mar/Racial%20and%20Ethnic%20Disparities%20in%20U%20S%20%20Health%20Care%20%20A%20Chartbook/Mead_racialethnicdisparities_chartbook_1111%20pdf.pdf

This chartbook provides a framework through which policymakers, teachers, researchers, and practitioners may understand health disparities and formulate solutions. The chartbook presents data regarding health disparities, including their nature and etiology, and seeks to provoke thought about why disparities exist and how they can be eliminated.

Keywords:    Tools | Research | Policy | Education & Training | Clinical & Mental Health | Public Health | Patients & Consumers | Governance & Leadership | Government | Quality Improvement | Disparities | Governance, Leadership, and Workforce | Communication and Language Assistance | Engagement, Continuous Improvement, and Accountability |

Health Disparities: Barriers to a Culture of Preparedness External Web Site Policy

Honore, R. L. (2008). Health Disparities: Barriers to a Culture of Preparedness. Journal of Public Health Management & Practice, 14(6), S5-S7. doi: 10.1097/01.PHH.0000338381.29071.d6

This article discusses the ways that inequalities in health and healthcare present a barrier to the United States' disaster preparedness and response activities. The article sets out to show that individuals, communities, the private sector, nonprofits, and all levels of government need to work together to reduce health inequalities to improve the Nation's level of preparedness and response to a crisis.

Keywords:    Research | Policy | Public Health | Patients & Consumers | Government | Profession-Based | Disparities | Governance, Leadership, and Workforce | Communication and Language Assistance | Engagement, Continuous Improvement, and Accountability |

Physician Implicit Attitudes and Stereotypes About Race and Quality of Medical Care External Web Site Policy

Sabin, J. A., Rivara, F. P., & Greenwald, A. G. (2008). Physician implicit attitudes and stereotypes about race and quality of medical care. Medical Care, 46(7), 678-685. doi: 10.1097/MLR.0b013e3181653d58

This study used a social psychological perspective to examine what effects healthcare providers' implicit attitudes about race have on healthcare and racial and ethnic healthcare disparities. The data indicate that most doctors in all racial and ethnic groups show an implicit preference of Whites over Blacks except for Black doctors, who show no preference for either race.

Keywords:    Research | Clinical & Mental Health | Patients & Consumers | Population-Based | Profession-Based | Disparities | Governance, Leadership, and Workforce | Communication and Language Assistance | Engagement, Continuous Improvement, and Accountability |

Integrating Immigrant Families in Emergency Response, Relief and Rebuilding Efforts External Web Site Policy

Wang, T., & Yasui, L. (2008). Integrating immigrant families in emergency response, relief and rebuilding efforts. The Annie E. Casey Foundation and Grantmakers Concerned with Immigrants and Refugees. Retrieved from the Grantmakers Concerned with Immigrants and Refugees website: http://www.gcir.org/system/files/Integrating%20Immigrant%20Families%20in%20Emergency%20Response%2C%20Relief%20and%20Rebuilding%20Efforts.pdf

This report examines the disparities faced by immigrants and limited-English-proficiency communities during times of disaster. It focuses on emergency management at the local level since, oftentimes, the local government is the first on the scene during a disaster event.

Keywords:    Research | Policy | Education & Training | Clinical & Mental Health | Public Health | Patients & Consumers | Governance & Leadership | Government | Population-Based | Disparities | Governance, Leadership, and Workforce | Communication and Language Assistance | Engagement, Continuous Improvement, and Accountability |

The influence of physicians' demographic characteristics and their patients' demographic characteristics on physician practice: Implications for education and research External Web Site Policy

Berger, J. T. "The influence of physicians' demographic characteristics and their patients' demographic characteristics on physician practice: Implications for education and research." Academic Medicine, 83.1 (2008): 100-105.

Demographic differences, specifically race, gender, and religion, have been shown to affect the diagnosis, type of treatment, and prevention methods provided to patients. This study from Academic Medicine highlights the necessity of cultural self-awareness and individualized patient care.

Keywords:    Research | Policy | Clinical & Mental Health | Patients & Consumers | Population-Based | Profession-Based | Communication | Disparities | Governance, Leadership, and Workforce | Communication and Language Assistance | Engagement, Continuous Improvement, and Accountability |

Race, medical researcher distrust, perceived harm, and willingness to participate in cardiovascular prevention trials External Web Site Policy

Braunstein, J. B., Sherber, N. S., Schulman, S. P., Ding, E. L., & Powe, N. R. (2008). Race, medical researcher distrust, perceived harm, and willingness to participate in cardiovascular prevention trials. Medicine 87(1), 1-9. doi: 10.1097/MD.0b013e3181625d78

Using a tool called the Medical Researcher Distrust Index, researchers examined individuals' perceived risk of engaging in medical research, specifically in cardiovascular clinical trials. This study presents medical professionals and researchers with a number of intervention approaches that may help alleviate racial and ethnic disparities in research methodology.

Keywords:    Research | Education & Training | Clinical & Mental Health | Patients & Consumers | Population-Based | Disparities | Governance, Leadership, and Workforce | Communication and Language Assistance | Engagement, Continuous Improvement, and Accountability |

Racial disparities in cancer therapy External Web Site Policy

Gross, C. P., Smith, B. D., Wolf, E., & Andersen, M. (2008). Racial disparities in cancer therapy. Cancer, 112(4), 900-908. doi: 10.1002/cncr.23228

This study, published by the American Cancer Society, analyzes whether racial disparities in cancer therapy received by Medicare beneficiaries had been reduced between the early 1990s and 2002 as a result of the increase of disparities reduction initiatives. The study shows no noticeable decrease in racial disparities between 1992 and 2002.

Keywords:    Research | Policy | Clinical & Mental Health | Patients & Consumers | Government | Population-Based | Disease-Based | Disparities | Governance, Leadership, and Workforce | Communication and Language Assistance | Engagement, Continuous Improvement, and Accountability |

In the absence of words: A compilation of personal stories addressing the language barrier in health care External Web Site Policy

PALS for Health, & the California Endowment. (2008). In the absence of words: A compilation of personal stories addressing the language barrier in health care. Retrieved from http://tcenews.calendow.org/pr/tce/document/In_the_Absence_of_Words.pdf

By presenting individual stories and narratives, this document seeks to educate and raise awareness about language barriers that exist in the U.S. healthcare system. The stories presented here come from interpreters and language ambassadors from the PALS for Health Program. Each story provides a real experience of a limited-English-proficiency individual and their struggles in the healthcare system.

Keywords:    Research | Education & Training | Clinical & Mental Health | Patients & Consumers | Population-Based | Disparities | Communication and Language Assistance |

Summary of state law requirements addressing language needs in health care External Web Site Policy

Perkins, J., & Youdelman, M. (2008). Summary of state law requirements addressing language needs in health care. Retrieved from the National Health Law Program website: http://www.healthlaw.org/images/stories/issues/nhelp.lep.state.law.chart.final.0319.pdf

The National Health Law Program published a report detailing all existing State law requirements relating to language access needs in healthcare settings. Each State's data are presented in a unique chart with citation to the legislation, a brief description, and coding that indicates the subject matter being addressed.

Keywords:    Research | Policy | Clinical & Mental Health | Public Health | Patients & Consumers | Government | Communication | Disparities | Communication and Language Assistance | Engagement, Continuous Improvement, and Accountability |

Primary-care clinician perceptions of racial disparities in diabetes care External Web Site Policy

Sequist, T. D., Ayanian, J. Z., Marshall, R., Fitzmaurice, G. M., & Safran, D. G. (2008). Primary-care clinician perceptions of racial disparities in diabetes care. Journal of General Internal Medicine 23(5), 678-684. doi: 10.1007/s11606-008-0510-7

This study analyzes racial disparities within the diagnosis and treatment of diabetes. The findings from this study indicate the need to incorporate strategies such as clinical education about healthcare disparities to improve the treatment of minority patients and to help eliminate healthcare disparities among many racial and ethnic minorities.

Keywords:    Research | Clinical & Mental Health | Patients & Consumers | Disease-Based | Disparities | Governance, Leadership, and Workforce | Communication and Language Assistance | Engagement, Continuous Improvement, and Accountability |

Identifying and Evaluating Equity Provisions in State Health Care Reform External Web Site Policy

Smedley, B., Alvarez, B., Panares, R., Fish-Parcham, C., & Adland, S. (2008). Identifying and evaluating equity provisions in state health care reform (Volume 90). Retrieved from The Commonwealth Fund website: http://www.commonwealthfund.org/

This report examines barriers to healthcare primarily among racial and ethnic minorities, immigrants, and those who are limited English proficient through the lens of insurance and State-level policies and reforms. The report evaluates existing or proposed policies in five States-Massachusetts, Washington, California, Illinois, and Pennsylvania. It also identifies existing State-level policies for equal access to care.

Keywords:    Research | Policy | Clinical & Mental Health | Public Health | Patients & Consumers | Population-Based | Communication | Disparities | Communication and Language Assistance | Engagement, Continuous Improvement, and Accountability |

Creating Equity Reports: A Guide for Hospitals. Boston, MA External Web Site Policy

Weinick, R. M., Flaherty, K., & Bristol, S. J. (2008). Creating Equity Reports: A Guide for Hospitals. Retrieved from The Disparities Solutions Center, Massachusetts General Hospital website: http://www2.massgeneral.org/disparitiessolutions/z_files/Disparities%20Hospital%20guide.qxp.pdf

The findings in this report indicate that although many hospitals collect information about their patients' demographics, race, and ethnicity, they often do not make use of the information. This resource is a guide designed to assist hospitals in using that information to develop an equity report.

Keywords:    Tools | Policy | Education & Training | Clinical & Mental Health | Patients & Consumers | Governance & Leadership | Profession-Based | Communication | Quality Improvement | Health Literacy | Disparities | Governance, Leadership, and Workforce | Communication and Language Assistance | Engagement, Continuous Improvement, and Accountability |

DiversityRx: Improving Health Care in a Diverse World External Web Site Policy

TIDES. (2011). Diversity Rx: Improving Health Care in a Diverse World. Retrieved from http://diversityrx.org/

DiversityRx informs, educates, and supports healthcare providers, policymakers, researchers, and advocates who work to improve quality of care for minority, immigrant, and indigenous communities.

Keywords:    Tools | Research | Education & Training | Clinical & Mental Health | Public Health | Governance & Leadership | Patients & Consumers | Governance, Leadership, and Workforce | Communication and Language Assistance | Engagement, Continuous Improvement, and Accountability |

Pocket Guide to Culturally Sensitive Health Care External Web Site Policy

Hands-on ideas for building effective and therapeutic relationships with diverse populations from 25 different cultures in 11 areas of care.

*This resource was submitted by a Think Cultural Health visitor using our "Submit a Resource" feature.

Keywords:    Clinical & Mental Health | Communication | Governance, Leadership, and Workforce | Education & Training | Patients & Consumers | Population-Based | Tools |

Multicultural HIV/AIDS and Hepatitis Service External Web Site Policy

A public site where people can access multilingual information on HIV and Hepatitis C.

*This resource was submitted by a Think Cultural Health visitor using our "Submit a Resource" feature.

Keywords:    Clinical & Mental Health | Communication | Governance, Leadership, and Workforce | Disease-Based | Disparities | Education & Training | Government | Health Literacy | Communication and Language Assistance | Engagement, Continuous Improvement, and Accountability | Patients & Consumers | Policy | Population-Based | Profession-Based | Public Health | Quality Improvement | Research | Tools |

Holistic Honu Wellness Center - Bridging the Gap between Traditional Healing and Western Medicine External Web Site Policy

The Holistic Honu Wellness Center is a very small health and wellness center in Berkeley, California where they address the issue of Native Hawaiian health disparities by acting as a conduit between traditional healing practices and the western medical communities everyday. Their current program has been the development and execution of a culturally competent education curriculum designed to address health disparity issues within Native Hawaiian communities that consists of four distinct levels.

*This resource was submitted by a Think Cultural Health visitor using our "Submit a Resource" feature.

Keywords:    Governance & Leadership | Clinical & Mental Health | Communication | Governance, Leadership, and Workforce | Disparities | Education & Training | Health Literacy | Communication and Language Assistance | Engagement, Continuous Improvement, and Accountability | Patients & Consumers | Population-Based | Public Health | Quality Improvement | Research | Tools |

Native American Spirituality External Web Site Policy

An information Guide for Health Care providers, hospital staff and administrators, chaplains, school administrators, funeral directors and others regarding ceremonies, rights and obligations.

*This resource was submitted by a Think Cultural Health visitor using our "Submit a Resource" feature.

Keywords:    Governance & Leadership | Governance, Leadership, and Workforce | Education & Training | Government | Health Literacy | Engagement, Continuous Improvement, and Accountability | Patients & Consumers | Policy | Quality Improvement |

Advancing Effective Communication, Cultural Competency, and Patient/Family-Centered Care for LGBT Community External Web Site Policy

This new field guide from The Joint Commission urges U.S. hospitals to create a more welcoming, safe and inclusive environment that contributes to improved health care quality for lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) patients and their families. The guide, Advancing Effective Communication, Cultural Competence, and Patient-and Family-Centered Care for the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender (LGBT) Community: A Field Guide, was developed with support from The California Endowment.

*This resource was submitted by a Think Cultural Health visitor using our "Submit a Resource" feature.

Keywords:    Governance & Leadership | Communication | Governance, Leadership, and Workforce | Disparities | Education & Training | Engagement, Continuous Improvement, and Accountability | Patients & Consumers | Policy | Population-Based | Public Health | Quality Improvement | Research | Tools |

Reexamining LGBT Healthcare External Web Site Policy

Out of the box LGBT cultural competence training, including 10-minute original video, slides and a manual

*This resource was submitted by a Think Cultural Health visitor using our "Submit a Resource" feature.

Keywords:    Governance & Leadership | Clinical & Mental Health | Communication | Governance, Leadership, and Workforce | Disease-Based | Disparities | Education & Training | Government | Patients & Consumers | Population-Based | Profession-Based | Public Health |

CDC Diabetes website

CDC's Division of Diabetes Translation translates diabetes research into daily practice to understand the impact of the disease, influence health outcomes, and improve access to quality health care. Resources are available in Spanish as well.

*This resource was submitted by a Think Cultural Health visitor using our "Submit a Resource" feature.

Keywords:    Disease-Based | Education & Training | Government | Health Literacy | Patients & Consumers | Public Health | Research |

Consumer bill of rights and responsibilities: Report to the President of the United States

Advisory Commission on Consumer Protection and Quality in the Health Care Industry. (1997). Consumer bill of rights and responsibilities: Report to the President of the United States. Retrieved from http://www.opm.gov/insure/archive/health/cbrr.htm

The commission was appointed to advise President Bill Clinton and to recommend measures necessary to ensure quality of care and to protect consumers and workers in the health care system. The document details consumer rights in relation to information disclosure, choice of providers and plans, access to emergency services, participation in treatment decisions, respect and nondiscrimination, confidentiality of health information, and complaints and appeals. A final chapter deals with consumer responsibilities. An executive summary and discussions of goals and guiding principles are included.

Keywords:    Provide effective, equitable, understandable, and respectful quality care and services | Government | Patients & Consumers |

Navigating the US health care system: A video guide for immigrant and diverse patient populations External Web Site Policy

Bobal, A. M., Brown, H. L., Hartman, T. L., Magee, M., & Schmidt, C. M. (2007). Navigating the US health care system: A video guide for immigrant and diverse patient populations. Journal of the Medical Library Association, 95(3), 286-289. doi:10.3163/1536-5050.95.3.286

Librarians at the McGoogan Library of Medicine at the University of Nebraska created and marketed a video to help recent immigrants navigate the American health care system. The video ("Following the Clues: A Visit to the Doctor and Library") targeted children, whom, it was believed, would share the information with their parents and to whom very basic information could be addressed without apparent condescension. The article describes the considerations and processes that went into the making of the video on a limited budget.

Keywords:    Provide effective, equitable, understandable, and respectful quality care and services | Government | Patients & Consumers | Education & Training |

Patient-centered care: Improvement guide External Web Site Policy

Frampton, S., Guastello, S., Brady, C., Hale, M., Smith, S. B., & Stone, S. (n.d.). Patient-centered care: Improvement guide. Retrieved from http://www.patient-centeredcare.org/index.html

This online guide offers more than 150 specific practices (in areas such as spirituality, integrative medicine, care for the caregiver, and environment of care) intended to meet the needs of patients, families, and staff. Also included are a self-assessment tool, implementation tools, discussion of data and technology use in relation to patient centeredness, and an appendix that draws connections between patient-centered practices and the domains of the Hospital Consumer Assessment of Health Plans Survey.

Keywords:    Provide effective, equitable, understandable, and respectful quality care and services | Quality Improvement | Patients & Consumers | Tools |

Caring for patients from different cultures: Case studies from American hospitals External Web Site Policy

Galanti, G. A. (2008). Caring for patients from different cultures: Case studies from American hospitals (4th ed.). Philadelphia, PA: University of Pennsylvania Press.

This updated text contains more than 200 case studies illustrating cross-cultural misunderstandings and offering insight into the meaning of culturally competent care. Topics covered include birth, end of life, traditional medicine, mental health, pain, religion, and staff issues. The author is a noted medical anthropologist.

Keywords:    Provide effective, equitable, understandable, and respectful quality care and services | Patients & Consumers | Research | Education & Training |

Gay and Lesbian Medical Association External Web Site Policy

Gay and Lesbian Medical Association. (n.d.). Retrieved from http://www.glma.org/

The site includes resources for patients (e.g., find a provider) and providers (e.g., continuing medical education courses) and information about advocacy efforts, conferences, the Healthcare Equality Index, and the Lesbian Health Fund. Members receive a weekly LGBT Health Digest, action alerts, and access to the membership directory.

Keywords:    Provide effective, equitable, understandable, and respectful quality care and services | Population-Based | Patients & Consumers |

Health care delivery and deaf people: Practice, problems, and recommendations for change External Web Site Policy

Harmer, L. (1999). Health care delivery and deaf people: Practice, problems, and recommendations for change. Journal of Deaf Studies and Deaf Education, 4(2), 73-110. doi:10.1093/deafed/4.2.73

The author reviews socio-economic and legal issues, patients' "knowledge base, personal experiences, and understanding of health care relationships, ... the Deaf community's perspectives, providers' views about disability, communication between providers and deaf patients, ... barriers encountered in health care delivery," and the ethical implications of these factors. She concludes that deaf and hard-of-hearing individuals often receive "inadequate, inappropriate, and unethical health care."

Keywords:    Provide effective, equitable, understandable, and respectful quality care and services | Population-Based | Policy | Patients & Consumers | Research |

A dictionary of patients' spiritual & cultural values for health care professionals External Web Site Policy

HealthCare Chaplaincy. (2011). A dictionary of patients' spiritual & cultural values for health care professionals. Retrieved from http://www.healthcarechaplaincy.org/userimages/doc/A-Dictionary-of-Patients'-Spiritual-Cultural-Values-for-Health-Care-Professionals.pdf

The first part of the book offers a concise overview of a number of major world religions. For each, defining beliefs, rituals, and daily practices are itemized. Beliefs and restrictions concerning food and medical practices are given. The second part treats culture in a similar manner. African-American, Hispanic-American, Native American, Caribbean, Middle Eastern, and South and East Asian cultures are detailed according to numerous characteristics, including many relating to health and health care.

Keywords:    Provide effective, equitable, understandable, and respectful quality care and services | Population-Based | Patients & Consumers | Tools | Education & Training |

Ask Me 3 External Web Site Policy

National Patient Safety Foundation. (n.d.). Ask Me 3. Retrieved from http://www.npsf.org/for-healthcare-professionals/programs/ask-me-3

Ask Me 3 is a patient education program designed to promote communication between health care providers and patients. Patients are encouraged to ask three questions and to be certain they understand the answers. What is my main problem? What do I need to do? Why is it important for me to do this? Documents are available for download, and brochures may be ordered in English and Spanish.

Keywords:    Provide effective, equitable, understandable, and respectful quality care and services | Patients & Consumers | Tools | Education & Training |

Improving patient safety through informed consent for patients with limited health literacy External Web Site Policy

National Quality Forum. (2005). Improving patient safety through informed consent for patients with limited health literacy. Retrieved from http://www.qualityforum.org/Publications/2005/09/Improving_Patient_Safety_Through_Informed_Consent_for_Patients_with_Limited_Health_Literacy.aspx

The foreword to this report notes that informed consent is "an essential component" in addressing health care disparities. The report synthesizes lessons learned by providers who adopted the National Quality Forum's Safe Practice 10. Barriers to implementation are discussed and potential solutions offered, key findings noted, and recommendations made. Appendices contain a number of case studies.

Keywords:    Provide effective, equitable, understandable, and respectful quality care and services | Health Literacy | Quality Improvement | Patients & Consumers | Research |

Creating a patient education tool

Stonecypher, K. (2009). Creating a patient education tool. Journal of Continuing Education in Nursing, 40(10), 462-467. doi:10.3928/00220124-20090923-06

This article outlines the development of a low-literacy self-management book for stroke patients. In the process, significant knowledge was gained by team members to enrich their own professional development.

Keywords:    Provide effective, equitable, understandable, and respectful quality care and services | Disease-Based | Patients & Consumers | Tools | Education & Training |

Patient communication assessment tool External Web Site Policy

The Joint Commission. (2010). Patient communication assessment tool [Figure 5-1]. In Advancing effective communication, cultural competence, and patient- and family-centered care: A roadmap for hospitals. Retrieved from http://www.jointcommission.org/assets/1/6/ARoadmapforHospitalsfinalversion727.pdf

This page in the Joint Commission's Roadmap for Hospitals shows a sample patient communication assessment tool "designed to be incorporated into computerized charting menus to help nurses select drop down items which corresponded to their patient communication assessment, intervention, and evaluation process."

Keywords:    Provide effective, equitable, understandable, and respectful quality care and services | Profession-Based | Patients & Consumers | Governance & Leadership | Tools |

CAHPS cultural competence item set

U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality. (2011). CAHPS cultural competence item set. Retrieved from https://www.cahps.ahrq.gov/surveys-guidance/item-sets/cultural-competence.aspx

The Cultural Competence Item Set is a set of supplemental items for the Consumer Assessment of Healthcare Providers and Systems' Clinician and Group Survey. It was "designed to capture the patient's perspective on the cultural competence of health care providers." It touches on such topics as patient-provider communication, complementary and alternative medicine, discrimination, level of trust, politeness, truth telling, linguistic competency and access to language services, and shared decision-making.

Keywords:    Provide effective, equitable, understandable, and respectful quality care and services | Governance, Leadership, and Workforce | Government | Patients & Consumers | Tools |

The Ethical Force Program External Web Site Policy

American Medical Association. (2012). The Ethical Force Program. Retrieved from http://www.ama-assn.org/ama/pub/physician-resources/medical-ethics/the-ethical-force-program.page

The Ethical Force Program includes patients, practitioners, purchasers, and representatives of health plans and government and accrediting agencies. This group is responsible for creating, testing, and disseminating performance measures on matters of ethical concern. Topics addressed include privacy and confidentiality, patient-centered communication, and access to health care. The Ethical Force Program is also responsible for the Communications Climate Assessment Toolkit, available through this site.

Keywords:    Governance, Leadership, and Workforce | Patients & Consumers | Governance & Leadership | Public Health |

Worlds apart: A four-part series on cross-cultural healthcare External Web Site Policy

Grainger-Monsen, M., & Haslett, J. (2004). Worlds apart: A four-part series on cross-cultural healthcare [Film series]. Brooklyn, NY: Fanlight Productions.

The series consists of four short films, totaling 47 minutes combined running time. Filmed in patients' homes and neighborhoods as well as in clinical settings, each part follows one patient and his or her family as they are faced with critical medical decisions. The series highlights the tensions between modern medicine and traditional beliefs, problems of communication, and mistrust of the health care system.

Keywords:    Governance, Leadership, and Workforce | Patients & Consumers | Communication and Language Assistance |

Patient-Centered Primary Care Collaborative External Web Site Policy

Patient-Centered Primary Care Collaborative. (n.d.). Retrieved from http://www.pcpcc.net

The collaborative's members include employers, universities, health plans, and other stakeholders in America's health care system who endorse the patient-centered medical home model. Resources are available for patients, clinicians, employers, and health plans. Information is also provided on state pilot projects and on a number of specific health care topics.

Keywords:    Governance, Leadership, and Workforce | Disease-Based | Patients & Consumers |

Health literacy and patient safety: Help patients understand External Web Site Policy

American Medical Association Foundation. (2007). Health literacy and patient safety: Help patients understand [Educational kit]. Chicago, IL: American Medical Association Foundation.

This self-study kit for health care professionals and patient advocates contains an instructional video on DVD and CD-ROM (VHS format available separately), a manual for clinicians, discussions of cases, evaluation materials, and a continuing medical education questionnaire. The estimated time to complete the activity is two and a half hours.

Keywords:    Communication and Language Assistance | Health Literacy | Patients & Consumers |

Doctoring across the language divide External Web Site Policy

Chen, A. (2006). Doctoring across the language divide. Health Affairs, 25(3), 808-813. doi:10.1377/hlthaff.25.3.808

The author, who speaks three languages, recounts her experience with a patient who spoke none of those three and the difference made by a trained medical interpreter.

Keywords:    Communication and Language Assistance | Patients & Consumers |

Shared decision making when an interpreter is needed: A case study with Latino men at risk for prostate cancer External Web Site Policy

Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. (n.d.). Shared decision making when an interpreter is needed: A case study with Latino men at risk for prostate cancer (Grant details). Retrieved from http://www.rwjf.org/grants/grant.jsp?id=63830

This project was designed to develop measures specific to interpreter-mediated shared decision-making and to produce easy-to-use tools for use by health care providers, interpreters, or patients.

Keywords:    Communication and Language Assistance | Disease-Based | Population-Based | Patients & Consumers | Public Health |

CAHPS item set for addressing health literacy

U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality. (2011). CAHPS item set for addressing health literacy. Retrieved from https://www.cahps.ahrq.gov/Surveys-Guidance/Item-Sets/Health-Literacy.aspx

The principal goal of this Consumer Assessment of Healthcare Providers and Systems item set "is to measure, from the patients' perspectives, how well health information is communicated to them by health professionals." This item set contains 29 supplemental items to be used with the CAHPS Clinician and Group Survey and covers the following topic areas: (1) communication with doctors, (2) communication about health problems and concerns, (3) communication about medicines, (4) communication about tests, (5) communication about forms, and (6) disease self-management.

Keywords:    Communication and Language Assistance | Health Literacy | Government | Patients & Consumers |

Tools to foster the collaboration with patient and family advisors External Web Site Policy

Institute for Patient- and Family-Centered Care. (2011) Tools to foster the collaboration with patient and family advisors. Retrieved from http://www.ipfcc.org/tools/downloads-tools.html

The tools include a checklist for attitudes about patients and families as advisers; a patient and family advisory council work plan; applying patient and family-centered concepts to bedside pediatric rounds; creating advisory councils; staff liaison coordination; tips for patients and families; tips on involving patients and families on committees and task forces; tips for recruiting patients and families to serve in advisory roles; and tips for how to be an effective patient or family adviser.

Keywords:    Engagement, Continuous Improvement, and Accountability | Patients & Consumers | Tools |

Culture, language, and patient safety: Making the link

Johnstone, M. J., & Kanitsaki, O. (2006). Culture, language, and patient safety: Making the link. International Journal of Quality in Health Care, 18(5), 383-388. Retrieved from http://intqhc.oxfordjournals.org/content/18/5/383.full.pdf

The authors suggest that failure to recognize the link between culture and language, on the one hand, and patient safety, on the other, exposes hospital patients from minority backgrounds to preventable adverse events. They also suggest that the vulnerabilities of these patients be "actively addressed in patient safety systems and processes."

Keywords:    Engagement, Continuous Improvement, and Accountability | Patients & Consumers | Public Health |

Lahey Clinic Foundation External Web Site Policy

Lahey Clinic Foundation. (2012). Retrieved from http://www.lahey.org/

The website of this teaching hospital affiliated with Tufts University is notable for the extensive and multileveled list of informational and service links under the heading of patient and visitor information. These include the opportunity to request an interpreter for any of 30 languages; a patient bill of rights; social services that may include counseling for patients and family from social workers trained in cultural diversity; and, for visitors, a list of local lodging and restaurants. A Community Benefits Report is also available from the site.

Keywords:    Engagement, Continuous Improvement, and Accountability | Patients & Consumers | Communication and Language Assistance |

Guide for developing a community-based patient safety advisory council

Leonhardt, K., Bonin, D., & Pagel, P. (2008). Guide for developing a community-based patient safety advisory council (AHRQ Publication No. 08-0048). Retrieved from http://www.ahrq.gov/qual/advisorycouncil/advisorycouncil.pdf

This guide offers a 10-step approach to the creation of a patient safety advisory council. The intended audience is assumed to have a basic knowledge of patient safety and some awareness of logistics and meeting planning but without prior experience of including consumers and a wide array of perspectives in the discussions.

Keywords:    Engagement, Continuous Improvement, and Accountability | Government | Patients & Consumers | Public Health |

Benchmarking patient complaints data across Ontario hospitals: University Health Network invites collaboration External Web Site Policy

Rogers, S., & Vilhena, B. (2005). Benchmarking patient complaints data across Ontario hospitals: University Health Network invites collaboration [Online case study]. Healthcare Quarterly. Retrieved from http://www.longwoods.com/product/download/code/17728

The authors observe that it is increasingly common for hospitals to designate some individuals to serve as "complaints departments" to respond to patient concerns and that many hospital improvements result from this source of information. While acknowledging the difficulties in the establishment of a scientifically rigorous methodology for comparing interhospital complaints data, they suggest that the time is ripe for provincewide benchmarking efforts.

Keywords:    Engagement, Continuous Improvement, and Accountability | Quality Improvement | Patients & Consumers | Public Health |

"What did the doctor say?": Improving health literacy to protect patient safety External Web Site Policy

The Joint Commission. (2007). "What did the doctor say?": Improving health literacy to protect patient safety. Retrieved from http://www.jointcommission.org/assets/1/18/improving_health_literacy.pdf

In an effort to narrow the "gap between the abilities of ordinary citizens, and especially those with low health literacy or low English proficiency, and the skills required to comprehend typical health care information," the Joint Commission convened a roundtable panel to address this issue. This document is structured around its three recommendations, with discussion and suggestions for implementation of each. The recommendations are to (1) make effective communications an organizational priority to protect the safety of patients, (2) incorporate strategies to address patients' communication needs across the continuum of care, and (3) pursue policy changes that promote improved practitioner-patient communications.

Keywords:    Engagement, Continuous Improvement, and Accountability | Health Literacy | Patients & Consumers |

Development and validation of a patient-reported measure of physician cultural competency External Web Site Policy

Thom, D. H., & Tirado, M. D. (2006). Development and validation of a patient-reported measure of physician cultural competency. Medical Care Research and Review, 63(5), 636-655. doi:10.1177/1077558706290946

The authors note that "the lack of a measure of cultural competency limits our ability to evaluate interventions and to understand the effects of cultural competency on health care quality." They report their efforts to construct and validate "a patient-reported measure of physician culturally competent communication behaviors."

Keywords:    Engagement, Continuous Improvement, and Accountability | Profession-Based | Patients & Consumers |

CAHPS: Surveys and tools to advance patient-centered care

U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality. (2011). CAHPS: Surveys and tools to advance patient-centered care. Retrieved from http://www.cahps.ahrq.gov

This website for the Consumer Assessment of Healthcare Providers and Systems program offers standardized patient questionnaires on health plans, clinicians and groups, surgical care, dental plans, hospitals, nursing homes, home health care, and in-center hemodialysis. There is a survey that asks American Indians about their health care experiences. There are supplemental item sets for children with chronic conditions, people with mobility impairments, and providers of cultural competence, health literacy, and information technology.

Keywords:    Engagement, Continuous Improvement, and Accountability | Health Literacy | Government | Patients & Consumers |

Mystery shopping gaining popularity in health care sector: The rise of consumer-directed care is one reason why physicians, hospitals and health plans are sending people incognito to learn how things are working External Web Site Policy

Vogt, K. (2006, September). Mystery shopping gaining popularity in health care sector: The rise of consumer-directed care is one reason why physicians, hospitals and health plans are sending people incognito to learn how things are working. American Medical News. Retrieved from http://www.ama-assn.org/amednews/2006/09/18/bise0918.htm

"Mystery shoppers" pose as customers to report on the quality of service a business's employees provide. While still under 2 percent of the $600 million industry total in 2004, revenues from health care organizations had doubled from the previous year.

Keywords:    Engagement, Continuous Improvement, and Accountability | Quality Improvement | Profession-Based | Patients & Consumers |

Health care taps "mystery shoppers": To improve service, hospitals and doctors hire spies to pose as patients and report back External Web Site Policy

Wang, S. (2006, August 8). Health care taps "mystery shoppers": To improve service, hospitals and doctors hire spies to pose as patients and report back. Wall Street Journal. Retrieved from http://online.wsj.com/article/SB115499684792929340-search.html#articleTabs%3Darticle

Some health care facilities that use "mystery shoppers" report "improved estimates of wait times, better explanations of medical procedures, extended hours for hospital administration workers, escorts for patients who have gotten lost, and even less-stressful programming on the television in the waiting room." It is becoming more frequent that levels of patient satisfaction affects hospital executives' pay. The article also touches briefly on the issues of staff dissatisfaction and medical ethics in regard to the mystery patient trend.

Keywords:    Engagement, Continuous Improvement, and Accountability | Quality Improvement | Profession-Based | Patients & Consumers |

Supporting and Transitioning the Health Care Safety Net External Web Site Policy

The Texas Health Institute recently released its second report, “Supporting and Transitioning the Health Care Safety Net,” in its five-part series known as The ACA & Racial and Ethnic Health Equity Series. This new report provides a snapshot on status and progress of nine key provisions in the ACA critical for advancing racial and ethnic health equity within the health care safety net. Through a close review of latest data, research, and federal guidance on safety net provisions, this report describes how the safety net stands at a crossroads in an era of reform. Complemented by perspectives from the field—including hospitals and health centers—the report discusses important priorities, challenges, and next steps for addressing and advancing racial and ethnic health equity through the safety net.

*This resource was submitted by a Think Cultural Health visitor using our "Submit a Resource" feature.

Keywords:    Governance, Leadership, and Workforce | Disparities | Health Literacy | Communication and Language Assistance | Patients & Consumers | Policy | Research | Tools | Provide effective, equitable, understandable, and respectful quality care and services |