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A Comparison between Modern Medical Care and Cultural Care

A Comparison between Modern Medical Care and Cultural Care

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Modern medical care and cultural care are in the book Spirit Catches You and You Fall Down by Anne Fadiman. Just from the onset people at Merced community medical center that the customs on medical treatment, traditions and culture of the Hnong were not the right way to treat Lia Lee. At MCMC, the doctors were not used to the Hmong culture hence it was difficult for them to understand why Lee family failed to give medications to their daughter. From that view, it is evident that Lia Lee was having a different cultural perspective. The Hmong culture has a spiritually view on things unlike the American culture of using logic and tested knowledge.

The culture of the Hmong child clashes with the American culture and the doctors that she encounters along her journey. The Hmong represent the cultural care while the American doctors and health professionals represent the modern health care. The Hmong do not believe in physical or mental illness, but they believe in the spirituality. Their beliefs inhibit them from realizing the cultural differences. The hospital tries in providing the appropriate care to Lia and ensuring that the Lee family understood from the Hmong interpreter the need for the daily regiment. This intervention did not materialize instead; it created a tense relationship between the hospital and lee family due to the cultural difference.

To assist Lia and Lee family, the hospital should have demonstrated cultural competence by combining Hmong’s traditional healing practices and their medications. They should have understood that Lee family grew up in knowing that Hmong traditions would cure their daughter. In addition, it was naive for the doctors to believe that the lee family would start believing in medication.

Reference

Fadiman, A. (1997). The spirit catches you and you fall down. New York: Farrar, Straus, And Giroux.


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