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Cultural competency legislation

New Jersey

Along with the New Jersey cultural competency legislation that was signed
into law in March 2006.

The state of California has recently approved the following cultural competency legislation: Civil Code §51 Continuing Medical Education on Cultural Competency, AB 1195—Chapter 514. Effective July 1, 2006, CME courses offered by CME providers located in alifornia must include education on cultural and linguistic competence in the practice of medicine, unless the course “is dedicated solely to research or other issues that does not include a direct patient care component.”. Thus, as of July 1, 2006, physicians will not be able to count toward their 100 hour CME minimum any courses that, though required to do so, do not meet this requirement. To meet the cultural and linguistic competency requirements, a CME course must address at least one or a combination of the following:

1.      Cultural Competency: Defined as “as set of integrated attitudes, knowledge and skills that enables a health care professional or organization to care effectively for patients from diverse cultures, groups and communities.” At the minimum it is recommended to include:

A.      Applying linguistic skills to communicate effectively with the target population;

B.      Utilizing cultural information to establish therapeutic relationships;

C.      Eliciting and incorporating pertinent cultural data in diagnosis and treatment;

D.      Understanding and applying cultural and ethnic data to the process of clinical care.

2.      Linguistic Competency: Ability of a physician to provide patients who do not speak English or who have limited ability to speak English, direct communication in the patient’s primary language.

3.      Legal Requirements: A review and explanation of the applicable law regarding linguistic access.

Other states

Legislation is currently under consideration in Arizona, Illinois and  New  York.