Cross-cultural Medical Education: Conceptual Approaches and Frameworks for Evaluation


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Abstract

Given that understanding the sociocultural dimensions underlying a patient's health values, beliefs, and behaviors is critical to a successful clinical encounter, cross-cultural curricula have been incorporated into undergraduate medical education. The goal of these curricula is to prepare students to care for patients from diverse social and cultural backgrounds, and to recognize and appropriately address racial, cultural, and gender biases in health care delivery. Despite progress in the field of cross-cultural medical education, several challenges exist. Foremost among these is the need to develop strategies to evaluate the impact of these curricular interventions. This article provides conceptual approaches for cross-cultural medical education, and describes a framework for student evaluation that focuses on strategies to assess attitudes, knowledge, and skills, and the impact of curricular interventions on health outcomes.

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