Cultural awareness and health literacy coincide in public health education and promotion, yet they are distinct concepts. Cultural awareness refers to understanding how a person’s culture may inform their attitudes and actions associated with any behavior. This awareness is an important skill in the provision of culturally appropriate health services. Health literacy refers to understanding the basic health information and services to make appropriate decisions (CDC, 2011). Without clear information and an understanding of the information’s importance, people are more likely to skip necessary medical tests, end up in the emergency room more often, and have a harder time managing chronic diseases like diabetes or high blood pressure (Rudd, 2007). Yet, in the United States, nearly 9 out of 10 adults have difficulty using the everyday health information that is routinely available in healthcare facilities, retail outlets, media, and communities (Kutner, 2006).
This week you examine the importance of acquiring cultural awareness skills. In addition, you examine building health literacy skills within communities, including helping others in the community build their own health literacy skills (CDC, 2011). Taking into account ethical considerations, cultural beliefs and possible limitations in health literacy, you design interventions that specifically address the needs of your selected community.
Post a response to the following:
Identify one issue within the concepts of health literacy and cultural awareness. Also, explain the differences between health literacy and cultural awareness. (Demonstrate how these might lead you to a different type of awareness.) Discuss how cultural differences in beliefs and attitudes may influence your work with different communities in relation to HPV vaccines. Discuss to what extent ethical principles of public health practices are considered. Expand on your insights utilizing the Learning Resources.
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