The Impact of Cultural Competence Education on Short-Term Medical Mission Groups: A Pilot Study

Mary K. Steinke, Mary E. Riner, Carol Shieh

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

3 Scopus citations


Background: There are large numbers of short-term medical mission (STMM) groups traveling yearly from the United States to underdeveloped countries. Medical professionals educated in the Western biomedical model of treatment have an ethnocentric view of how to treat illness. Purpose: The purpose of this pilot study was to demonstrate that a 2-hour culturally sensitive educational program administered to medical professionals travelling to Haiti on a STMM could raise their cultural competency as measured by a specific tool. Method: The participants were invited to a short educational program designed to help them understand their own biases and make better treatment decisions for their patients based on the five constructs of Dr. Campinha-Bacote's cultural competence model. Findings: Following an evidence-based educational program, the members of the STMM groups demonstrated improved levels of cultural competency. Implications: This program could provide an appropriate way to raise the cultural competency of medical mission health care providers.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)428-435
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Transcultural Nursing
Issue number4
StatePublished - Sep 2015


  • cultural competence
  • ethnocentric
  • quasi-experimental designs
  • short-term medical mission groups

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Nursing(all)

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