What Is Cultural and Linguistic Competence?
Cultural and Linguistic Competence: The ability of health care providers and health care organizations to understand and respond effectively to the cultural and linguistic needs brought by the patient to the health care encounter.2Being Aware
Health Care Disparities: Health disparities are the persistent gaps between the health status of minorities and non-minorities in the United States.3 They are also increasingly understood to refer to differences that occur due to gender, education or income, living in rural areas, or sexual orientation, in addition to race and ethnicity.4 Health care disparities refer to differences in health care for different populations. Two important aspects that affect health outcomes are access to health care and the quality of health care.5
Health care disparities are influenced by factors such as lack of access to preventative care and/or quality medical care due to cultural/language barriers, low income, lack of insurance, and geographic location among other factors. See examples of key health disparities by racial and ethnic groupin comparison with White counterparts.