Provision of quality care requires the ability of the patient to clearly understand and articulate their conditions. Therefore, a language barrier can hinder the ability of the patient to articulate their condition. Professional interpreters can be used in this case hence creating patient satisfaction (Giddens, 2021). A lot of problems are encountered while providing care to a patient that does not speak English. While dealing with such patients, the treatment length becomes longer and more expensive for the patients due to the overall cost increase by interpreters.
A language barrier can cause miscommunication which is responsible for medical errors that may cause readmission because the patient cannot follow instructions about medications due to misunderstanding. Again, it reduces the quality of service because the language barrier makes it difficult for patients to open up about their personal issues, including psychological problems such as depression and anxiety (Oregon Center for Nursing, 2010). Interpreters create barriers whereby the patients and the nurse concentrate on them hence losing some aspects of communication such as body language.
Understanding the culture of a patient increases their satisfaction with services. Partnership in making medical decisions by both the caregivers and the patients is enhanced by cooperation. Acknowledging cultural differences shaped by ethnicity, occupation, and gender enhances cultural competence (Giger & Haddad, 2021). Also, recruitment of staff from different cultures, using community health workers, and integrating the values and attitudes in healthcare can enhance cultural competence. Learning more about the culture of nurses can have a positive impact on the satisfaction of the patients. Understanding the values of different cultures allows them to serve better.
Nurses should always seek clarification in incidences when they encounter a language barrier (Pocket Nurse, 2018). Health facilities should be competent in linguistics, which is possible by providing professional interpreters that offer essential clarification.
Giddens, J. F. (2021). Concepts for nursing practice – E-book. Elsevier Health Sciences.
Giger, J. N., & Haddad, L. (2021). Transcultural nursing: Assessment and intervention. Elsevier.
Oregon Center for Nursing. (2010). Promising Practices for Education and Healthcare. Web.
Pocket Nurse. (2018.). Nurses as Patient Educators. YouTube. Web.