From the Coordinator The concept of cultural competence is really coming into its own. Many of us can remember when it was difficult to find resources on that subject or answers to questions such as “What does it mean to be a ‘culturally competent’ clinician or researcher?” and “What is the relationship ... Coordinator's Column
Coordinator's Column  |   July 01, 2004
From the Coordinator
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Cultural & Linguistic Diversity / Coordinator's Column
Coordinator's Column   |   July 01, 2004
From the Coordinator
Perspectives on Communication Disorders and Sciences in Culturally and Linguistically Diverse Populations, July 2004, Vol. 11, 1-2. doi:10.1044/cds11.2.1
Perspectives on Communication Disorders and Sciences in Culturally and Linguistically Diverse Populations, July 2004, Vol. 11, 1-2. doi:10.1044/cds11.2.1
The concept of cultural competence is really coming into its own. Many of us can remember when it was difficult to find resources on that subject or answers to questions such as “What does it mean to be a ‘culturally competent’ clinician or researcher?” and “What is the relationship between cultural competence and clinical skills?” Over the years, ASHA has endeavored to provide answers to these and other similar questions. ASHA has also developed materials and resources to support communication professionals in our journeys toward greater cultural awareness and cultural knowledge. Recently, ASHA has produced two new valuable resources. The Board of Ethics recently published an Issues in Ethics statement on cultural competence. The document provides guidance to ASHA members and certificate holders “…so they may provide ethically appropriate services to all populations, while recognizing their own cultural/linguistic background or life experience and that of their client/patient/student.” (Go to http://www.asha.org/about/ethics/ethics_issues_index.htm and click on cultural competence.) The statement discusses the implications of each of the Principles of Ethics for developing and exercising cultural competence in professional practice. The statement calls on communications professionals to be aware of their own beliefs and values as well as those of their client/patient/student. It also calls on service providers to bring cultural sensitivity to their selection and implementation of diagnostic and treatments regimens. The statement goes on to remind us that continuous professional development should include information and experiences that equip us to provide culturally competent services. The statement also offers guidance on delegating to other professionals tasks that are beyond our scope of practice and expertise. The statement highlights the importance of cultural competence by offering “…cultural competence is as important to successful provision of services as are scientific, technical, and clinical knowledge and skills.”
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