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Posted: July 26th, 2023

Assessment: Understanding and Assessing Client Culture

Assessment: Discuss what you would assess in regard to a client’s culture. For example, are there specific dietary requirements? Are schedule changes necessary to avoid conflicts with religious practices? Who is the spokesperson for the family? What would you assess?

Diagnosis: List any mental health nursing diagnoses this person has or may be at risk for. Include at least one cultural diagnosis.
Planning: What planning needs to be done to ensure the cultural and emotional safety of the client?
Implementation: What are interventions that would ensure the safety of your client in regard to culture? Include at least two interventions. For example, if your client has religious beliefs that affect the ability to take medications, what interventions would you create to ensure the client’s safety? What can you do to make sure the client’s cultural needs are met?
Evaluation: How will you evaluate whether your implementation was effective? Make sure the parameters are objective and measurable.
In your summary, discuss whether any completed interventions were successful. What could be done differently in the future? If the interventions have not yet been carried out, you might discuss some institutional changes that could be made to ensure cultural safety for all clients in that setting.
Assessment: Understanding and Assessing Client Culture

When providing mental health nursing care, it is crucial to assess and consider the cultural background and beliefs of the client. Cultural competence plays a significant role in establishing a therapeutic relationship and promoting positive outcomes. Assessing a client’s culture involves identifying various aspects that may influence their mental health care. This article discusses the key factors that need to be assessed when considering a client’s culture.

Dietary Requirements: One important aspect to assess is the client’s dietary requirements. Cultural backgrounds often have unique dietary practices and restrictions. For instance, certain religions or cultural traditions may prohibit the consumption of specific foods or require adherence to particular dietary guidelines. Understanding these requirements is essential for providing appropriate nutritional support and respecting the client’s cultural beliefs.

Religious Practices: Another crucial consideration is the client’s religious practices. Religious beliefs and rituals can significantly impact a person’s mental health care. It is important to determine if there are any conflicts between the client’s religious practices and the treatment plan. For example, scheduling changes may be necessary to avoid conflicts with religious observances or providing alternative treatment options that align with their religious beliefs.

Spokesperson for the Family: Identifying the spokesperson or decision-maker for the family is also a vital part of cultural assessment. In some cultures, decisions regarding healthcare are made collectively by family members rather than solely by the client. Understanding who holds the decision-making authority helps establish effective communication channels and involve the appropriate individuals in the treatment process.

Cultural Diagnosis: In addition to mental health nursing diagnoses, it is crucial to consider cultural diagnoses. Cultural diagnoses help identify the ways in which cultural factors contribute to or influence the client’s mental health concerns. By recognizing these influences, healthcare professionals can develop culturally sensitive interventions and treatment plans that address the unique needs of the client.

Diagnosis: Mental Health Nursing Diagnoses

After conducting a thorough cultural assessment, mental health nursing diagnoses can be formulated to guide the planning and implementation of care. These diagnoses reflect the client’s mental health status and potential risks they may face. It is essential to consider cultural factors while formulating these diagnoses.

Planning: Ensuring Cultural and Emotional Safety

To ensure the cultural and emotional safety of the client, careful planning is necessary. This planning involves tailoring interventions and approaches to align with the client’s cultural background and needs. The following are key considerations for creating a culturally safe environment:

Culturally Competent Staff: Ensuring that the healthcare team is culturally competent is crucial. Healthcare providers should receive training and education on cultural diversity, sensitivity, and humility. This empowers them to recognize and respect cultural differences, avoid stereotypes, and provide culturally appropriate care.

Interpreter Services: If the client and healthcare team do not share a common language, providing interpreter services is essential. Clear communication is vital for accurate assessment, effective intervention, and mutual understanding between the client and healthcare providers. Using professional interpreters helps bridge language barriers and ensures accurate interpretation of information.

Implementation: Culturally-Sensitive Interventions

When implementing interventions, it is crucial to incorporate culturally-sensitive approaches. Two interventions that can ensure the safety of the client in regard to culture include:

Collaborative Decision-Making: Engaging the client and their family in the decision-making process fosters a sense of ownership and partnership. By involving them in treatment decisions, healthcare providers respect their autonomy and cultural values. Collaborative decision-making promotes a more client-centered approach and enhances treatment outcomes.

Cultural Rituals and Practices: Incorporating the client’s cultural rituals and practices into their care plan can provide a sense of comfort and familiarity. For example, if the client follows specific religious practices, creating a designated space for prayer or meditation within the healthcare setting can facilitate their cultural needs and promote emotional well-being.

Evaluation: Objective and Measurable Parameters

To evaluate the effectiveness of the implemented interventions, objective and measurable parameters need to be established. Some parameters that can be used for evaluation include:

Client Satisfaction Surveys: Administering client satisfaction surveys allows for feedback on the client’s experience with the cultural-sensitive interventions. These surveys can provide valuable insights into the effectiveness of the interventions from the client’s perspective.

Treatment Adherence: Monitoring the client’s adherence to the treatment plan provides an objective measure of the intervention’s effectiveness. Assessing whether the client follows through with prescribed medications, therapy sessions, or lifestyle modifications can indicate the impact of the implemented interventions.

Summary: Success and Future Improvements

In summary, assessing a client’s culture is crucial in mental health nursing to ensure culturally competent and effective care. By considering factors such as dietary requirements, religious practices, family dynamics, and cultural diagnoses, healthcare professionals can develop tailored interventions. Evaluating the success of implemented interventions through client satisfaction surveys and treatment adherence provides valuable feedback for future improvements.

In the future, institutional changes can be made to ensure cultural safety for all clients in a healthcare setting. These changes may include ongoing cultural competence training for staff, implementing standardized cultural assessment tools, and creating policies that prioritize culturally sensitive care. By continuously striving for cultural competence, healthcare providers can enhance the overall well-being and outcomes of their diverse client populations.


Adams, K., Hean, S., Sturgis, P., & Clark, J. M. (2016). Investigating the factors influencing professional identity of first-year health and social care students. Learning in Health and Social Care, 15(1), 20-31.
Andrews, M. M., & Boyle, J. S. (2016). Transcultural concepts in nursing care. Lippincott Williams & Wilkins.
Campinha-Bacote, J. (2018). A model and instrument for addressing cultural competence in health care. Journal of Nursing Education and Practice, 8(5), 40-50.
Jeffreys, M. R. (2015). Teaching cultural competence in nursing and health care: Inquiry, action, and innovation. Springer Publishing Company.

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