NRS 429V Week 3 Assignment Benchmark Heritage Assessment Assignment

NRS 429V Week 3 Assignment Benchmark Heritage Assessment Assignment

The health and wellbeing of families depend largely on the social and environmental factors in their communities. Social and environmental factors influence the access to and utilization of healthcare services. They act as critical determinants that can either enhance or hinder the utilization of healthcare services and health outcomes of individuals with different health needs. Therefore, this paper explores the social determinants of health, age appropriate screenings and health model that can be utilized to ensure family-centered health promotion for the family interviewed in assessment one.

NRS 429V Week 3 Assignment Benchmark Heritage Assessment Assignment

Heritage Assessment

In the field of medicine and is considered a vital tool. The component is used to access, maintain and restore a person’s beliefs and culture. Heritage assessment tool further assists in evaluating various cultural health methods. Each from a given community has their culture which differs from heritage. Health heritage assessments focus on individuals, mental, physical and spiritual beliefs. Different cultures have varying opinions about diseases, death, health, and illness. In numerous cultures, health is deemed as a sense of balance between a person’s body, mind, spirit, and family to the external earthly forces (Jeffreys, 2015). The different beliefs in every culture are crucial in heritage assessment since they provide a holistic approach to the concern. Additionally, it helps the health provider and the member of a given culture an ideal communication channel promotes healthy practices.

The primary purpose of in nursing is to gather information about different beliefs that will provide general proficiency in health caregivers. Cultural and conventional health approaches are crucial in health protection, restoration, and maintenance. Health protection is an act preventing an individual from being unhealthy; health restoration is the act of treating and bringing an individual to ideal health while health maintenance is the act giving a routine on how to be healthy (Jeffrey’s, 2015). The paper will focus on three different cultures; Hispanic, India and Korea and compare the differences in the health traditions and beliefs and the influence it has on their health. Most importantly the heritage assessment will gather information on how health givers will efficiently deliver health care to the three cultures.

The first culture to be interviewed was Hispanic the individual is born and raised in Argentina and came to the United States at the age of 26 years. His parents are both born in Argentina, but her grandmother was born in Italy. The individual is a roman catholic but bares focuses on religion. He has married a wife from the same culture and religion, and his first language is Spanish. According to him spirituality and religious beliefs are considered vital in Hispanic culture especially in the United States. He argues that according to traditional beliefs health issues are a result of God’s will (Spector, 2002). Treatment is administered by conventional folk healers such as Curanderos and herbalist. These traditional folk healers use aromas, rituals, and herbs to treat diseases. Treating diseases used a conventional approach for years. However, some chronic illness and conditions the traditional folk healers were not able to heal. The culture distrust medicine claiming is not natural, and several have been known to decline treatment.

The next culture to evaluate was Indian culture. The individual interviewed, in this case, was born and raised in India and came to the United States at the age of 20 years. His parents are both born in India, but his grandfather was born in Pakistan. He is an Islam who is actively involved in religion and celebrates it.  He has married a wife and has various friends of the same faith and culture. His first language is both Hindi and English. I also happen to share the same religion with the family. Traditional beliefs linked ailments physical, spiritual and mental to malevolent spirits bringing the religious aspect into the same (Spector, 2002). Cures comprised of charms, rituals, surgical intervention, medicine, and mantras. Back then Buddha was considered the “healing guru” since healing practices were associated with the Buddhist monastic tradition. Health management was also highly recognized since specific herbs and trees were given for purposes of hygiene and water sanitation. Dentistry and trepanation were also highly practiced to show health management was top notch. Awareness was also crucial since medical knowledge was spread far and wide by the monks for purposes of prevention from illnesses.

After the spirit of scientific inquiry spread old traditional Buddha and wandering healers’ beliefs were questioned. Tangible proofs were sort leading to philosophical schools being built. The result was the establishment of a scientific culture of healing known as Ayurveda. Today most of these practices are still practiced due to an emphasis on biomedicine. However, it remains a challenge of how to incorporate them with modern medicine.

Heritage Assessment
Understanding and Applying the Heritage Assessment tool

Nurses have to be culturally competent, they need to assess their individual values and beliefs about health and health care; otherwise, nurses might assume that all cultures share western premises and values. In order to be considerate to an individual, nurses must remember that beliefs and values influence individuals and families health care decisions. Nurses and healthcare providers should stay up to date on the diversity of patient culture, if they plan to be effective (Grand Canyon University. 2011). The purpose of this paper is to discuss applying the heritage assessment tool, identify health traditions of certain cultures and interviewing individuals from three different cultures for comparison and how they subscribe to their traditions. About The Assessment Tool

When discussing the usefulness of applying a heritage assessment in evaluating the needs of the whole person, it behooves nurses to remember that treating an individual as a whole, includes understanding the patient, family and community. All these observations can be found within the heritage assessment tool. The assessment tool asks family members to include distant family members and how often they see their family. It also focuses on the community by asking about their schooling and neighborhood environment. Furthermore, the assessment inquires an individual is active in their religious community, how often they participate within their community, and the area in which the individual resides. Therefore, a nurse should feel that this tool is valid when assessing an individual as a whole. The heritage assessment tool is beneficial when assessing health promotions of a person from all cultures because it gives the nurse a foundation and perspective on how begin to planning of care for an individual and family as a whole.


When comparing the health between our Western culture and other cultures, other cultures place a higher emphasis on the family as one of their most important values. This is important when looking at how an individual responds to health maintenance, health promotion and health restoration. The three cultures that participated in the cultural heritage assessment tool were American, Arabic, and Pacific Islander. By comparing this assessment tool, the nurse can see that other cultures focuses more on the family contribution as a whole and that religious beliefs have a deep meaning in respect to someone’s health, which affects an individual overall view about their health. In western medicine when someone is sick, they are taken to a doctor to promote healing. However, other families that were raised within different cultures such as Islamic and Pacific Islander stated that when a family member was sick they were not taken to a doctor; this is of course differs from the western cultures traditions. American culture

Within the American culture, common health traditions are immunizations, follow up appointments and yearly exams. When it comes to immunizations, it is now left up to parents to decide if they do or do not want the children to be immunized. At one time, every school age child was required to have their shots; however, as the American culture has grown to such a diverse culture, parents can now opt out of requiring their child to be immunized for school. Other health issues crippling Americans are drugs, obesity, alcohol and smoking, which is partly why health preventions are such a big key in preventing diseases. There are cultures that believe an individual should not take anything harmful into their bodies and that is why many other cultures may not be facing these harmful modifiable risk factors like Americans are facing (Edelman. & Mandle, 2010). Islamic Culture

According to A. Hammad, the Islamic belief is that when a person has been taken ill, that they ask “Allah” God, to promote taking the sickness away through prayers. They subscribe to their traditions by doing what was passed down from one generation to the other. The family, to include extend family
and close friends, surrounds the sick person for prayers. They also ask the elder person, known as “Baba,” for his advice and prayers. A Baba is thought to be a folk healer due to his age, wisdom and community standing. Within the Islamic culture when someone is sick, they are considered excused from certain behaviors such as going to the Mosque, daily prayers and if it is during their holy month of Ramadan they are excused from the tradition of fasting, so that the sick person can continue to heal. There are also certain rules that must be followed; for example, an Islamic woman should only be seen by a woman doctor and when giving meds or feeding patients there can be no pork derivative being given to the patient to respect their belief practices (A. Hammad, personal communication, October 30, 2013). Pacific Islander culture

According to D. Perez who was raised in Guam, they also have a strong family belief- where an individual does not seek medical treatment unless absolutely necessary. Their religious beliefs are from the catholic faith. If they get sick they are treated at home by their family members, this includes praying and often the pastor is called for what is called anointing of the sick. This anointing is performed to promote good health over an individual and this is viewed as traditions. If an individual falls and has a broken bone then they would have to be treated by western medicine (D. Perez, personal communication, October 27, 2013). Health maintenance and health protection. In the American culture, individual attend follow up appointments and yearly exams for their health maintenance and protection. In Pacific Islander culture health maintenance and health protection are not always pursued initially, but they do not refuse health preventions either. Children get their immunization shots to help prevent disease and families also attend follow up appointments and exams (D. Perez, personal communication, October 27, 2013).

In Islamic culture, they do not pursued health maintenance or health protection, individuals that live in Jordan and even those brought up in America stick with family traditions of attending Mosque for their educational schooling. The Mosque does not require immunizations for children. In Jordan, families live in close net community and when someone gets sick they seek the guidance of the eldest member of their community. This is in part done due to financial issues and partly done due to their traditions (A. Hammad, personal communication, October 30, 2013). Health restoration. Many American’s used western type of medicine such as pharmaceuticals to help restore their health; nurses have seen the use of alternative therapies such as yoga, acupuncture, herbs and oils used to try and alleviate pain or halt the disease process, which are all a part of health restorations. Pacific Islander families that have hypertension, diabetes or cardiac disease do follow up with doctors as ordered to prevent further complications and restore their health. They also use pharmaceuticals needs to help restore their health when applicable (D. Perez, personal communication, October 27, 2013). For individuals from the Islamic Culture do not pursue health restoration because this is viewed to be Western medicine; even if an individual does seek out western medicine they do not generally trust western medicine. Many elderly people from Islamic culture will not seek out western medicine for treatment because they were raised that Allah takes an active role in their health (A. Hammad, personal communication, October 30, 2013). Differences

There are differences when it comes to health restoration. When an individual has an illness like a stroke and needs to be placed in a facility for rehab, the American and Pacific Islander culture are more likely to be inclined to placing a family member in a facility; however, the Islamic culture wants to care for their family member at home, surrounding by family that respects and understands their culture and beliefs (A. Hammad, personal communication, October 30, 2013). Similarities

While there is a difference between the cultures, there are similarities that exist within the Islamic and Pacific Islander cultures. The similarities between these two cultures are that the older family members are respected and their authority is unquestioned by others, their extended family has significant influence and the oldest male in the “family” is often the decision maker. Religion and family is considered to be the cornerstone when it comes to these cultures health beliefs (“How culture influences”). All of these similarities and differences show us how these individual families subscribe to their traditions.

Having a full understanding of an individual’s culture and utilizing the heritage assessment tool can only make nurses more vigilant in how we care for those of different ethnicity. The nurse should be mindful that how one views their culture, traditions, religion and beliefs do not represent all people from that ethnic background and that the views may simply be an opinion. Being culturally competent will help us minimize imposing our values on others and minimize the patient, families and communities anxiety. If nurses intend to make positive patient outcomes, then they must recognize culture care (Grand Canyon University. 2011).

Edelman. & Mandle, (2010). Health Promotion Throughout the Life Span (7th ed). Mosby. Retrieved from Grand Canyon University. (2011). NRS 429V, Family Centered Health Promotion, Lecture notes 3. Retrieved from How culture influences health beliefs. (n.d.). Retrieved from


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