Date of Award

Fall 12-24-2019

Document Type

Independent Study

Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)



Program Affiliation

Nurse Educator (NE)

First Advisor

Kris Hendrickx


Patient-centered care is achieved through effective communication between the patient and the healthcare team members. The purpose of this independent study project is to show that the increasing cultural, ethnic, and linguistic diversity in the United States healthcare system has resulted in an increased need for professionally trained medical interpreters, as well as the continued need to educate pre-licensure nursing students on the importance of providing culturally competent care. This paper will first focus on Limited English Proficiency (LEP) patients in healthcare. Information discussed will include data on the number of LEP patients who require healthcare, laws protecting LEP patients, the need for professional medical interpreters in healthcare, and the requirements of utilizing professional medical interpreters. The second part of this paper will focus on the need for nursing programs to continue to educate students on how to provide culturally competent care. Information discussed will include defining culturally competent care, skills and techniques for developing cultural competence, and how to implement cultural competence into nursing practice. Theoretical framework for this project is supported by the Adult Learning, Humanistic, Cultural Care Diversity and Universality, and Transformational Learning theories. Through a comprehensive literature search and review of literature, the results indicate 1) The need for professional medical interpreters to improve the care and communication between professionals and LEP patients and 2) The need for nursing programs to promote culturally competent care into their curriculum.

Included in

Nursing Commons