Fall Leadership Intensive Explores Cross-Cultural Perspectives
In late September, NH-ME LEND convened an in-person Leadership Intensive at the University of Southern Maine’s Lewiston/Auburn Campus. Through short mini-lectures and interactive activities, New Hampshire and Maine trainees explored the concept of cultural competence within family-centered care.
The day opened with a patient simulation with guest speaker Deka Farah. Deka shared her family story and role-played a newly immigrated Somali mother who brought her child to an initial primary care visit in which an autism screening tool was administered. Faculty members Hibo Omer and Marnie Morneault acted as the interpreter and medical assistant during the simulation. At the conclusion, trainees reflected upon the quality of cultural responsiveness and family-centered care exhibited during the interaction.
The afternoon session featured assistant professor Meg Morgan, a new LEND faculty member from the UNH Department of Communication Sciences and Disorders. Meg gave a short lecture on ethnographic interviewing. In clinical practice, the ethnographic interview approach is more than the traditional, provider-driven interview. It’s an empowering invitation for a person to describe their life. By initially posing open-ended questions, the interviewer invites a person to share information about a typical day, daily routines, and preferred activities. As the process unfolds, questions are posed to gather relevant information about a person’s priorities, family structure, and social support, and interviewers begin to understand how these factors intersect with a person’s challenges, views on disability, values, and beliefs. Through 20-minute interviews, trainees practiced these newly introduced techniques as well as learned about each other in unexpected ways.