Heredity, culture, and environment can have a significant impact on the way a patient behaves in the doctor’s office or at the hospital. Heredity refers to the way particular traits are passed from parents to their children through the genes that the latter inherit from the former. It has been proven that some diseases such as cancer and diabetes can be inherited through gene composition. Some societies believe that inherited diseases cannot be treated in hospitals, a belief that affects the degree of their compliance with the required medical interventions (Galanti, 2008).
Culture, just like heredity, can also affect the way a patient behaves in a medical office. Various cultures have different perspectives on what causes illness and how the sick should go about the treatment process. For instance, Asians believe that illnesses stem from some supernatural phenomena and only prayers or other mystical interventions can cure them. Consequently, a patient from the Asian culture is unlikely to comply with medical treatment involving modern drugs and technologies.
The environment where an individual lives can also affect his behavior when he goes to seek health care services. There are some societies where people do not believe in ...
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...o should be involved in the treatment process. Western cultures such as those in the United States and the United Kingdom, which believe illnesses are caused by natural and scientific phenomena, promote the use of specialized medical interventions and advanced therapeutic technology to diagnose and treat diseases. Other cultures such as the Asians believe illnesses are caused by supernatural phenomena and advocate for spiritual interventions as one of the ways of treating sicknesses. This paper describes how culture can influence health beliefs and patient compliance by focusing on the Asian culture.
Galanti, G. (2008). Caring for patients from different cultures. Philadelphia, PA: University of Pennsylvania Press.
Muto, T., Nakahara, T., & Nam, E. W. (2010). Asian perspectives and evidence on health promotion and education. New York, NY: Springer.
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