Proceedings of Annual Spain Business Research Conference

Proceedings of Annual Spain Business Research Conference
14 - 15 September 2015, Novotel Barcelona City Hotel, Barcelona, Spain
ISBN: 978-1-922069-84-9
Maneuvering through Cultural Diversity in the Contemporary
World: A Healthcare Industry Perspective
Shraddha Chowdhary
Cultural Diversity is being increasingly recognized as an important area in the study of
Human relations in organizations and has also begun to strongly impact health care services
which are no longer restricted to a particular country or region. The growing cultural diversity
demands great focus by Pharmaceutical Industry and others in the Healthcare Industry to
the largely diversified biomedical and psycho-social requirements of different ethnic and
cultural groups. The physiological reactions of medicines can vary across different ethnic
groups and even the requirement of dosage of medicines will vary from group to group.
Understanding a patient’s cultural differences, health beliefs and attitudes towards
medicines determines the marketing strategy of a Pharmaceutical Company. When setting
up a marketing strategy in the healthcare sector one must be completely acquainted with the
cultural nuances, differences and perceptions. Cultural perceptions can significantly
influence patient care and compliance. In addition to race and culture, location and
environment are the major contributors in patient compliance. A realistic multicultural training
should be provided to medical practitioner and pharmaceutical marketers with these factors
in mind. Pharmaceutical marketers and Medical Practitioners need to be keenly aware of
these influences on outcomes and develop their strategies accordingly to be able to succeed
in today’s culturally diversified markets. The paper aims to understand a medical
practitioner’s perception of cultural diversity in treatment and prescription. It also tries to
identify need for cultural competence in appreciating racial differences, social status, sexual
preference and patient doctor relationship. The study concluded that patient care can be
improved and doctor patient bond can be strengthened by a culturally sensitive medical
practitioner through better communication and understanding of patient’s culture, beliefs and
value system. A model describing the attributes of a culturally competent Medical
Practitioners were also identified from the study.
Keywords: Culture, Cultural competence, Doctor Patient Relationship, Cultural sensitivity,
Racial difference, Patient satisfaction
Prof. Shraddha Chowdhary, Department of Pharmaceutical Management, NIPER Hyderabad, India,
Email: [email protected]