- Ethics Home Page
- About the Center
- Focus Areas
- Contact Us
- Site Index
Culturally Competent Care for Muslim Patients: Introduction to Cases and Reflections
by Karen Peterson-Iyer
The cases here are fictional composites made up from the details of many different real situations. We did not perform any systematic analysis of these populations or the issues that commonly arise within them. Rather, we conducted personal interviews with doctors, nurses, social workers and chaplains who work specifically with patients from non-majority cultures in U.S. clinical health care settings. From these interviews we constructed fictional cases, drawing on some of the more common, and difficult, issues that tend to arise within these patient populations.
The commentaries that follow the case address some of the cross-cultural and ethical issues that arise. Commentaries are offered by several scholars or practitioners who are, themselves, from Muslim religious and/or cultural backgrounds. Each one stresses the ways in which the provision of health care in these relatively typical U.S. clinical settings is, or is not, adequately culturally competent. The commentaries highlight what might have been done differently in each case to improve the quality of patient care. The final commentary for each case responds to the others from a non-Muslim and more explicitly Western bioethical perspective.
Introduction to Culturally Competent Care
Karen Peterson-Iyer is a program specialist in health care ethics at the Markkula Center for Applied Ethics.