Masters Thesis

Project Noor: the South-Asian woman's guiding light to overcome cultural barriers in health care services

The United States is a country that is a melting pot of diversity. With so many cultures and ethnicities, the United States has created, reviewed, and implemented health care protocols and procedures to better accommodate the constant evolving demographic dynamics. South-Asians are the largest ethnic minority group in America consisting of people from Pakistan, Bangladesh, Nepal and Sri Lanka. The countries and their respective immigrant communities share common cultural, social and linguistic characteristics and values and thus are often clubbed together as one homogeneous region ( www.ameredia.com). Because of the constant evolving racial and ethnic demographics of the United states, health care services have had to become sensitive to conservative cultures such as the South-Asian culture in order to better serve the people of that culture. A literature review of the South-Asian culture, its cultural traits, taboos, and traditions along with a background on health care services for the South Asian Culture in America is provided. This information is provided in the hope that South-Asian American women and health care providers will learn to understand, embrace, and incorporate the fruits of both cultures while eliminating the differences that create barriers in health care services and choices by implementing a program that addresses these specific cultural needs.

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