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The theory of transcultural nursing appeared in the 1950s when Dr. Madeleine M. Leininger noticed cultural differences between her patients and assumed the impact of cultural heritage on illnesses and health. Throughout time, the theory has developed in a separate branch of nursing due to its relevance and topicality in the field. For the most part, Leininger relied on her research in nursing and anthropology to define principles of culturally specific and universal healthcare services. Among the historical trends that contributed to the development of transcultural nursing, one could mention globalization, which resulted in increased immigration, traveling, and more diverse society. All these factors demanded a more culturally sensitive and knowledgeable staff in nursing.
A diverse and multicultural patient population in the US makes transcultural nursing of the highest importance today. San (2015) informs that more than one-sixth of the US citizens are foreign-born, which creates challenges in communication and care in health care. Nurses, as well as other healthcare providers, need to be aware of cultural differences in health-related values, beliefs, and customs if they aim at providing quality healthcare services (San, 2015). Immigration, free labor markets, education, traveling, and technological advances are also critical trends that raise the demand for transcultural nursing. All the mentioned contributes to more cultural interactions within the country, and nurses should be culturally competent to avoid misunderstanding, disappointing, or even insulting patients due to limited knowledge about their culture.
As said, Leininger was the founder of the transcultural model. The researcher provided its definition and basic tenets, including the definition of culturally congruent care, the concept of caring, cultural care diversity and universality. Leininger also delivered formal evidence to back up her statement about the necessity of culturally competent nursing education. Her evidence-based research mainly relied on studying child behavior patterns based on the differences in their cultural backgrounds (Leininger, 2016). The findings in this research were precisely what Leininger started from when developing her breakthrough theory.
To some extent, the Andrews/Boyle Transcultural Interprofessional Practice (TIP) model complements on Leininger’s theory, focusing on the delivery of culturally congruent care. The context is the first among its components as the latter helps to clarify the patient’s health-related values, beliefs, and practices (Andrews & Boyle, 2019). An interprofessional team that will provide culturally congruent healthcare services is the second component. Effective communication between healthcare providers is the third component that matters because, otherwise, nurses and physicians would not deliver quality and culturally sensitive care to patients. A five-step problem-solving process is the fifth component. This process includes assessment, goal setting, planning, implementation, and evaluation of the outcomes of therapeutic care and interventions (Andrews & Boyle, 2019).