Greater Manchester Public Health Network includes the communities of: Auburn, Bedford, Candia, Deerfield, Goffstown, Hooksett, Manchester and New Boston.
Throughout our work, we are continually mindful of the diversity of our region. This is why we feel strongly about cultural and linguistic competence in all we do. What do we mean by this?
Cultural competence is “the integration of knowledge, information, and data about individuals and groups of people into clinical standards, skills, service approaches and supports, policies, measures, and benchmarks that align with the individual’s or group’s culture and increases the quality, appropriateness, and acceptability of health care and outcomes”. (Adapted from Cross et al., 1989)
Linguistic competence is the capacity of an organization and its personnel to communicate effectively, and convey information in a manner that is easily understood by diverse audiences including [persons of limited English proficiency, those who have low literacy skills or are not literate, and individuals with disabilities”. (Goode & Jones, 2004)
Cultural and linguistic competence (CLC) is important for all organizations, but it is essential for health and human service organizations like Makin It Happen in order to address our growing diversity, persistent disparities, and to promote health and behavioral health equity. The National Center for Cultural Competence has identified six compelling reasons for incorporating CLC:
- To respond to current and projected demographic changes in the U.S.
- To eliminate longstanding disparities in the health status of people of diverse racial, ethnic, and cultural backgrounds
- To improve the quality of services and health outcomes
- To meet legislative, regulatory and accreditation mandates
- To gain a competitive edge in the marketplace
- To decrease the likelihood of liability/malpractice claims
For more information or if you have questions about how to improve Cultural & Linguistic Competence (CLC), consider joining the Behavioral Health Equity Work Group (a joint effort of the NH Health & Equity Partnership and the NH Children’s Behavioral Health Collaborative). Makin It Happen is a member of this group.