Death and Dying in the Somali Culture Essay

Death and Dying in the Somali Culture Essay

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Culturally competent cares in the medical field can make a huge difference in the satisfaction and the healing of patients who are guests in the facilities that we will be at. In central Minnesota we have the privilege of having many different cultures in a small area. With many people immigrating here from their homeland it is important, as health care professionals, to have an understanding of the many different beliefs and traditions that we may come across in our personal and professional lives.
The Somali population has seen a significant rise in the number of individuals that are now living in central Minnesota. Most of the Somali population is of the Islamic faith. I would like to explain some of the differences in the Islamic beliefs and traditions on death and dying, why it is important to know about the differences, and what we can do it help ensure that we do not impede on the beliefs when we are talking care of individuals of the Islamic faith.
Family is very important in the Somali social structure. Their family lineage is only based on the paternal side. “Traditionally, the father has been the decision-maker and wage earner for the family. He interacts with society outside of the home.”(Children’s) When interacting with a Somali family it is appropriate to direct the questions to the male if he is present, if not, and asking or explaining information about children, the mother can be addressed because she is the one responsible for the upbringing of the children. Elders are respected in the community and it is customary to address them as aunt or uncle, even if they are not related. Because of this it is very important to make sure that they are responsible for the person if emergency consent is needed.
Death i...

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...and cultural influences that the patient follows. A good nurse is someone who is willing to learn about the patients and their beliefs in order to make their experience the best that it can be. The patients will appreciate the efforts of the staff if they try to follow their beliefs as best they can.

Works Cited

Children’s. (n.d.). Somali Culture and Medical Traditions 1. Somaliland Cyberspace homepage. Retrieved August 1, 2011, from
Kemp, C., & Rasbridge, L. (2001). Culture and the end of life. East African cultures: part I, Somali. Journal of Hospice & Palliative Nursing, 3(2), 59-61. Retrieved from EBSCOhost.
Sheikh, A. (1998). Death and dying- A Muslim perspective. Journal of the Royal Society of Medicine, 91, 138-140 Retrieved Aug.1 2011. From

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