Assessment of Mexican Culture

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A.W.’s Mexican Heritage
Richard Sniffen
Pace University

Abstract
America’s healthcare system has shown an increasing need for professional nurses who are trained and skilled in providing culturally competent care. With diverse cultures from all over the world each has their own beliefs and views towards health, illness, and healing. For today’s nurses to provide competent care they must recognize and respect the traditions and beliefs of each culture. Nurses must understand who they themselves are and put aside their personal opinions and beliefs to care for each patient without judgment. In trying to gain knowledge on a culture I wasn’t familiar with I interviewed my friend AW who is a native born Mexican American. Her insight into the Mexican culture and their views of health, illness, and healing provided many similarities and differences than that of the American culture. With Americas’ largest minority population being from Mexican backgrounds, nurses must be culturally competent towards their beliefs and customs to provide them with more effective and positive care.

For my cultural assessment, I insisted on interviewing my very close friend A.W. She is 21 years old and was born in the United States of America. Her parents were first generation Americans with her grandparents coming to America in 1935. Her grandfather joined the U.S. Army and fought in World War II in order to gain citizenship. After the war her grandfather and grandmother married and settled down in Brooklyn, N.Y.

AW is tall for a Mexican girl at 5’7” and is very thin weighing approximately 125 pounds. She is also very athletic currently being a college swimmer. She has long brown curly hair that matches her eyes and fair colored skin. She is currently in college at a school in Massachusetts where she lives in an off campus apartment. She is the older of two girls separated by three years. They are very close with one another, which is represented by both...
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