Opened My Eyes: The Meaning of an Immersion Experience for Currently Practicing Nurses

Carmen Inguilli, Dawn Doutrich, Carol Allen, Lida Dekker
2014 Online Journal of Cultural Competence in Nursing and Healthcare  
Nurses in all settings play a unique and privileged role in the care of patients and their family members. The diverse backgrounds and perspectives that care providers and their clients bring to each encounter present challenges for caring and understanding. In a discussion about nurses' position of power in the nurse/ patient relationship, Benner (1984) acknowledges that caring is always local, specific, and individual. She goes on to note that very few nursing interventions are successful
more » ... out mutual respect and genuine caring between the nurse and patient. Mitchelson and Latham (2000) state that nurses who lack cultural sensitivity can alienate the very people they claim to help. Further insight into which cultural learning activities within nursing curriculum, as well as a better understanding of effective ways of evaluating preparedness to practice culturally safe care, is indicated. Lack of understanding of how immersion experiences affect care in a multicultural society, such as the United States, affects the quality of nursing care. Although literature exists on the experiences of nursing students who participate in cultural immersion programs, little is known about the longitudinal impact that these experiences may
doi:10.9730/ fatcat:4rfntl3rcrfllk5gbj64m5kuqu