Recognizing that individuals from various minority groups are more likely to have high blood pressure and diabetes, to be overweight, and to experience higher rates of disability and death from cardiovascular disease, asthma, and sleep disorders, NIH's Heart, Lung and Blood Institute made reduction in health disparities a major goal in its 2003-2007 strategic plan. One goal calls for education and training programs to promote cultural competency among health care providers. Cultural competence curricula, however, often lack focus, vary widely, and have limited evaluation data to guide further development. The proposed project aims to correct these limitations. The overall goal is to create a set of instructional materials that can be used by medical students, residents, and physicians to develop the competencies needed to deliver culturally competent care to patients from diverse cultural, ethnic, racial, religious, socioeconomic and linguistic backgrounds. The Principal Investigator will head a team of content experts and coordinate the curriculum development and evaluation resources available at UCLA. Curricular development will be guided by a set of recommended competencies developed by an Expert Consensus Panel. A close working relationship with the newly funded Center for Research Education Training and Strategic Communication on Minority Health will permit us to bring current findings on health disparities quickly into the curriculum. Disparities in health care related to cardiac and asthma prevention and treatment will provide the substantive basis for curriculum materials. Materials to be developed include problem-based learning cases, web-based exercises, a targeted field experience, and the focused development of assessment instruments to evaluate individual's growth in knowledge, skills and attitudes. Taking a comprehensive approach spanning the entire medical curriculum, the project will develop instructional materials that are designed for undergraduate medical students, residents, and physicians. These materials will be implemented, evaluated and refined before dissemination. Successful development of the curriculum will help to educate future physicians to the fundamental role culture plays in health-related behavior and will prepare them to interact with patients from diverse backgrounds in a culturally sensitive manner that will reduce disparities.

National Institute of Health (NIH)
National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (NHLBI)
Academic/Teacher Award (ATA) (K07)
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Special Emphasis Panel (ZHL1-CSR-B (S2))
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Czajkowski, Susan
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University of California Los Angeles
Family Medicine
Schools of Medicine
Los Angeles
United States
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Fung, Cha-Chi; Lagha, Regina Richter; Henderson, Paula et al. (2010) Working with interpreters: how student behavior affects quality of patient interaction when using interpreters. Med Educ Online 15:
Wilkerson, LuAnn; Fung, Cha-Chi; May, Win et al. (2010) Assessing patient-centered care: one approach to health disparities education. J Gen Intern Med 25 Suppl 2:S86-90