Cultural Resources for Health Professionals

Native Hawaiian Health

The Department of Native Hawaiian Health is involved with a number of cultural competency initiatives for medical students. Most of the activities occur under the guidance of the Departments’ C3 Team (Cultural Competency Curriculum Team). For first year medical students, the team developed an “Introduction to Hawaiian Health” lecture, a series of three four-hour workshops, “The Interaction of Culture and Health,” a Native Hawaiian cultural simulated patient encounter and a year-long elective focusing on Native Hawaiian health and traditional healing. In addition, it offers a Cultural Immersion Weekend, which is a 2.5-day experiential learning experience in the Waianae community. The C3 team has also helped develop a longitudinal PBL (Problem based learning) case that students encounter in the first and second years of medical school. A fourth colloquium (workshop) occurs during the third year. The curricular content of the initiatives by the DNHH are designed to employ a variety of teaching modalities such as lectures, small group discussions, role-playing, experiential learning and standardized patient encounters. Traditional healers and cultural consultants are invited lecturers and cultural resources within the community are utilized. Topics are wide ranging, emphasize a holistic view of health and include: NH history, NH health disparities, social justice, cultural trauma, culture of medicine, self-awareness, patient-physician interaction, traditional healing practices, environmental and community health.

Other initiatives include a certificate of distinction in Native Hawaiian health, second and fourth year elective rotations in Native Hawaiian communities and orientations to Native Hawaiian Health workshops for the Family Medicine and Internal Medicine Residencies. The C3 team has also organized two faculty cultural immersions.

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