Pacific Model of Health

Topics: Nursing, Mental health, Schizophrenia Pages: 5 (2092 words) Published: July 30, 2013
Pacific Islanders health and wellbeing has a holistic approach involving spirituality and environment. As a result of these and other differences, pacific models have been developed. The Pacific people in New Zealand are represented by seven different countries which are Samoa, Cook Island, Tonga, Niue, Tokelau, Fiji and Tuvalu. This essay will describe one of the pacific health models, the Fonofale model, and will also discuss how this model can enhance nursing practice. Moreover, it will attempt to demonstrate the application of the Fonofale model to holistically assess the cultural and clinical needs of a Pacific client. Finally this essay will address the client's health concerns and resilient factors and one concern will be discussed in more detail, reflecting on how the client's cultural beliefs and practices impact on their current health status (Ministry of Health, 2009). The Fonofale model of health is a Samoan model that was created by a psychiatric nurse called Fuimaono Karl Pulotu Endemann. The model is a holistic concept and was developed to explain key features that Pacific peoples consider important for maintaining good health which included family, culture and spirituality. The model arose after the Dawn raids of the 1970’s in where the Pacific community was a target and over stayers were sent back to the Islands (Manukau Institute of Technology, 2013). The concept of the Samoan fale or meeting house was a way to incorporate and portray a Pacific way of what was important to the cultural groups. In the Fonofale model, cultural values and beliefs are seen as a shelter (the roof) – this may include traditional methods of healing and western treatments. Family forms the foundation or the floor of the fale. This may be the nuclear and/or the extended family and is significant to one's health. Connecting culture and family are the four pou or posts. ‘Spirituality’ includes christianity, religion or traditional spirituality. The ‘Physical’ pou relates to the physical and biological well being of the person. ‘Mental’ relates to the health of the mind which involves thinking, emotions and expressed behaviours. The fourth pou ‘Other’ refers to factors that can directly or indirectly affect health, such as gender, age, social class, employment, education and sexual orientation. Surrounding the outside of the fale is environment, time and context. Environment addresses the relationships and uniqueness of Pacific people to their physical environment. Time relates to the actual or specific time in history that impacts on Pacific people and context relates to the meaning of health for that particular person (Manukau Institute of Technology, 2013). Pacific models like the Fonofale model is important to consider when providing nursing care to Pacific people to establish empathy and rapport between the client and nurse. It also helps to acknowledge cultural differences and to demonstrate respect and appreciation. By acknowledging the different components of the Fonofale model this will provide nurses the tools that are culturally appropriate and effective for Pacific peoples in order to improve and maintain their holistic health and well being (Ministry of Health, 2008). The Popao is a canoe that Pacific elders use for fishing and travelling – the Popao model is portrayed by the concept of relationship, connectedness and working together as a unity in which is fundamental to the health and well being of the Pacific people. Auckland has the largest Pacific population in the world. There is diversity within the Pacific Population living in Aotearoa. Each Pacific nation has its own set of cultural beliefs, customs, languages, values and traditions. However, there are also differences within each Pacific community Therefore it is of great significance to understand the Pacific models as it can enhance nursing care (Ellis, 2007). As clinicians, an awareness of the context of where Pacific People have come from gives nurses...
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