Nurses’ Competency in Caring for Muslim Patients

Maria Carmela L. Domocmat


Problem or Purpose: This study aimed to assess the extent of cultural awareness of nurses on Muslim beliefs and practices and the degree of their cultural sensitivity towards caring for people having a different culture. Methodology: A quantitative descriptive-survey design was employed among the nurses employed in two urban hospitals in Region I, Philippines using convenience sampling. The Cultural Awareness and Sensitivity instrument and the self-constructed questionnaire on awareness on Islamic beliefs and practices were employed. Results/Findings: The nurses have moderate awareness and moderate sensitivity on the health beliefs and practices of Muslim patients. Specifically, they have moderate awareness on the subscales of dietary practices, family roles and organization and communication, and death rituals. In pregnancy and childbearing practices and religious practices they have poor awareness. Conclusions/Implications to nursing practice: Nurses should be encouraged to reflect on their clinical practice and to understand the impact of religious and cultural differences in their encounters with Muslim patients. In order to develop competency in caring for Muslim patients, nurses should first acquire knowledge about the Islamic beliefs and practices. Index terms: Muslim, nurses, Philippines, nursing competency

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