Health Psychology and Nurse Competencies

Changing patterns of health psychology is incorporating advanced procedures that are influencing patient illness and sickness. Chronic diseases, illnesses and several disorders are related to specific healthcare settings and vary among regions.

It depends on the factors that are prevalent in lifestyle, such as choice of healthy consumption patterns, smoking, alcohol consumption, overeating etc. Healthcare professionals are more aware of cultural differences, and they are more likely to treat patients with respect, to avert such cultural issues.

Patients belong to different categories. They differ in several ways such as personality, illness type, education and socioeconomic class. Cultural differences among patients are more significant such as based on race, color, and ethnicity.

Health psychology is an art and nurses should acquaint with it. However, cultural customs and traditions provide sufficient knowledge about the patient and help nurses to understand various aspects so that they can take good care of a patient.

Health Psychology and Cultural Competencies

This approach is known to improve the quality of healthcare. This is also called patient centeredness. In the health psychology, to develop the nurse-patient relationship, many policies are adopted worldwide, and cultural competency is one of them.

In doing this, it is essential to understand that patient is a unique person. Skin color is a significant difference among people; it can elaborate different issue and disorders effectively. Sometimes, it becomes difficult to identify about disease or injury, due to tan skin color.

Skin is the most significant organ of our body. Skin color best indicate internal health, and in case of an internal problem, doctors determine a change in skin tone.

Healing injuries and wounds are also related to the skin color as it plays its role in it. For instance, in case of the dark colored patient, pallor occurs, and it indicates anemia. In case of skin burn, the nature and color of skin bear central importance to understanding the degree of effectiveness.

Nurse-Patient Relationship

Nurse-patient relationship is supportive, to make a healthy environment. It is related to the wellness of patient and should be built on care, respect, trust, empathy and interest. These attributes are typical of nurse care. In a therapeutic nurse-patient relation, a friendly environment is built, and this supports healthcare of patient.

Nurse community is based on care, love, affection, kindness and empathy. Trust and respect are main components that can direct a patient towards the healing process.

Types of patients and treatment with them are different. Care, friendliness, pleasant atmosphere and approachability are peculiar features that matter in healthcare. Nurse-patient relationship is established when a patient starts trusting his healthcare professional, such as maintaining an eye contact, elaborating his/her body conditions etc. Patients feel comfortable when they are supported morally or held their hand. These practices are beyond any cultural competencies and focus on health psychology.

Communication Strategies for Cultural Group:

Communication practices work when underlying patient seeks attention. This strategy is constructive in making patient health and providing them compassion. The communications skills build patient nurse relation supports them and connect them. High level of care and relationship building is possible through the use of active communication.

This is also necessary to understand patient needs, disease nature and their comfort level. Communication is characterized as the third top issue in the cause of sentinel events by Joint Commission report 2012. Excellent communication of nurses can reduce medical errors and increase patient’s outcomes.

health psychology

Cultural Competencies in Health

Good practices of talking and sharing can improve patient’s comfort, satisfaction and they will trust more on the treatment options. Health psychology evaluates the role of communication. There are many theories in nursing communication.

Peplau’s Interpersonal Relations:

The theory talks about the relationship between patient and nurse and the therapeutic process and its significance. There is a significant factor, the, i.e. environment that should be understandable, to get the idea of culture, practices and beliefs. This theory elaborates some stages to arrive at the goal.

  1. Orientation Phase
  2. Identification Phase
  3. Exploitation Phase, and
  4. Resolution Phase

All of these stages help to achieve patient satisfaction, engage him in treatment, enhance collaboration with nurses and patient’s needs are fully met.

 Dyadic Interpersonal Communication Theory:

It talks about the communication and two main elements, encoder and decoder. These are influenced by the attitude, perception, content and emotional aspects. These primary factors are the terms of the message that can alter a patient’s state.

According to this theory, when encoder sends a message, the decoder should have that very information. This model highlights the importance of awareness, understanding and clarity about a patient’s condition. Health psychology describes this condition in better way.

Habermas Critical Theory:

This theory is about the collaborative strategies of nurse and physician. This allows healthcare individuals to move away from the only necessary information and gather some challenging observations. Such theories have importance due to highlighting the role of nurses in patient care and treatment.

Bottom Line

Cultural competencies improve quality of healthcare. In the past, there has been much work done on the role of health psychology, nurse-patient relationship and different strategies to build a healthy environment. Patient-centeredness and a specific cultural group based on skin color is significant.

Skin color diversity of patients allows nurses to implement various communication strategies and attain a good result. It is clear that communication has to perform a lot in providing comfort, satisfaction and building trust of the patient. It provides different stages, and in the light of each step, healthcare department can improve their research and exercise new patterns of treatment. To enhance the cultural competencies in nursing, more research and better environment should be provided so that medical errors can be reduced.


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