Importance of Inter Cultural Communication in the Medical Profession

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Importance of Inter Cultural Communication in the Medical Profession. The Spirit Catches You and You Fall Down is a book by Anne Fadiman that highlights the tale of a Hmong kid, Lia Lee with epilepsy, whose tragic demise unfolds the unfortunate results of lack of inter-communication in the medical field. Cultural and Ethnic Studies is a discipline that if embraced can eliminate many barriers across all professions regarding different cultural beliefs and affiliations. Despite the fact that the medical profession has grown to the advanced stage, physicians need to be well conversant with various beliefs of different people to facilitate efficacy in service delivery. The importance of intercultural communication in the medical profession is emphasized in this paper. Lia Lee had her first seizure at the age of around three months when a door got slammed by her older sister Yer. According to the Hmong ethnic group, her parents had the feeling that her soul departed as a result of the noise produced by the door (Fadiman, 1997). ‘Qaug dab peg’ is what her parents diagnosed the disease to be, meaning “the spirit catches you and you fall down.” The act by Lia’s parents to seek a medical intervention to her situation at Merced Community Medical Center (MCMC) shows that despite being culture-oriented, they also believed in modern medical practices intervention. However, her parents also relied on traditional methods of healing such as engaging Neeb to call back Lia’s soul. Due to lack of interpreters in the medical facility, Lia’s condition was misdiagnosed. The miscommunication barrier complicated Lia’s medical regime since her parents were either unwilling to

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