Discussion: Individualistic Cultures

Discussion: Individualistic Cultures

he group is the social unit, and dependence and connections within the group are valued. An individual’s identity is determined by his or her relationship and position within the group. People make decisions based on what is good for the group rather than on what is good for themselves. Saving face is valued as is showing respect for others. The needs and goals of the individual are subordinate to those of the larger group and should be sacrificed when the collective good so requires. Collectivists believe that achievement is a product of society. Examples of collectivist cultures include the Amish, Chinese, Mexicans, and Vietnamese (Purnell,
2013). Why are these two opposing views important in health care? People from individualistic cultures

make their health care decisions independently whereas individuals in collectivist cultures involve their families in the decision-making process. Health care professionals need to be aware of these differences in worldview. In collectivist cultures, illness is considered to be a family event rather than an individual occurrence. Knowledge transmission, personal responsibility, shame and guilt, help- seeking behaviors, competitiveness, and communication are affected by this aspect of worldview (Purnell, 2013). In individualistic cultures, direct questioning, sharing personal issues, and asking personal questions are typical. In a collectivist culture, disagreeing or saying “ no” to a health care professional is considered rude; therefore, when a health care professional asks if the patient understands, the patient may answer “ yes” even though understanding has really not occurred. In addition, disabilities, mental health issues, and other health problems that are stigmatized may be kept hidden to save face, and treatment may be delayed and care provided in the home (Purnell, 2013).The limitations of language to convey experience—even between people who speak the same language—are extremely obvious when we cannot explain something as important as the intensity of pain we feel or the unrelenting worry and frustration pain sometimes causes.

You must proofread your paper. But do not strictly rely on your computer’s spell-checker and grammar-checker; failure to do so indicates a lack of effort on your part and you can expect your grade to suffer accordingly. Papers with numerous misspelled words and grammatical mistakes will be penalized. Read over your paper – in silence and then aloud – before handing it in and make corrections as necessary. Often it is advantageous to have a friend proofread your paper for obvious errors. Handwritten corrections are preferable to uncorrected mistakes.

Use a standard 10 to 12 point (10 to 12 characters per inch) typeface. Smaller or compressed type and papers with small margins or single-spacing are hard to read. It is better to let your essay run over the recommended number of pages than to try to compress it into fewer pages.

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The paper must be neatly formatted, double-spaced with a one-inch margin on the top, bottom, and sides of each page. When submitting hard copy, be sure to use white paper and print out using dark ink. If it is hard to read your essay, it will also be hard to follow your argument.

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