Diversity in healthcare: ‘Don’t avoid uncomfortable talking’

According to Jet Bussemaker, chair of the Council on Public Health and Society, it affects a lot of people. “It has to do with the difference between men and women. Women often don’t get the care they need because we don’t get to know cardiovascular complaints very well, because they have fifty percent more side effects than medications and because they’re also less involved in studies,” Bosemaker says.

But it’s also about gay people who don’t feel safe in a nursing home, Bussemaker continues. “We also know about people with disabilities where it is difficult to identify care needs. Of course this also applies to people with an immigrant background. Genetic and cultural elements can play a role here.”

uncomfortable conversation

It can be uncomfortable for doctors and caregivers to look at a patient’s skin colour, gender, or sexual orientation. “Tapping can be dangerous, so do it as carefully as possible,” Bosemaker says. She mentioned the example of people with a Hindu background, who are more likely to be overweight and have type 2 diabetes. “If you can’t score it, you will never be able to show it that way.” That’s why Bussemaker thinks it’s important to facilitate that uncomfortable conversation. “Don’t be shy about it.”


This may mean that protocols sometimes have to be abandoned. “Trainers always say guidelines and protocols can always be informed and proven, otherwise you are not a good healthcare provider,” says Avene Guidry, MD, a medical intern at St. Anthony’s Hospital. “It’s a guideline. So if there’s a situation where you think, ‘Okay, the protocol says this, but my patient has this background or is choosing a certain different path in life, then this treatment is not appropriate. Then give way to disposal This is the essence of care. Together they decide what is right for a person. ”

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Megan Vasquez

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