Health Education England- Cultural Safety Position Statement

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Organizational Background

Health Education England (HEE) was initially established as the Special Health Authority in the year 2012. But under the Care Act 2014 provisions, the organization became a Non-Departmental Public Body (NDPB). The core aim of HEE is to provide valuable support to the delivery of exceptional healthcare and enhance the health of the patients as well as the public in the United Kingdom. The vision of the organization is providing the healthcare workforce with the right values and skills at the right time and right place in order to meet the needs of the patients at present as well as in the future (Health Education England, 2019). 

Health Education England is committed to providing the best possible outcomes and experiences for all the services users, patients, and public in the United Kingdom (World Health Organization, 2017). Cultural safety forms an integral part of the vision of HEE. It offers health care training that is guided by cultural respect, cultural awareness, cultural knowledge, cultural sensitivity, and competence in all the areas of the program. Along with the enhanced quality of care, the organization also promotes a culturally safe environment irrespective of the location and background of the individual across the entire United Kingdom. Cultural safety remains embedded in all the major aspects to deliver enhanced healthcare services.

Our Position

The Health Education England:

  • Works closely with the NHS partners locally, regionally, as well as nationally on the basis of shared priorities. 
  • Works with a number of partner organizations in order to replicate and scale up the good practices of education and training for patient safety (Commission on Education and Training for Patient Safety, 2016). 
  • Supports a world-class approach to education and training and creates opportunities for people coming from all background (Commission on Education and Training for Patient Safety, 2016). 
  • Employs the influence of the key stakeholders to encourage diversity and inclusion in the healthcare system. 
  • Works with other provider organizations to encourage learning that facilitates meaningful involvement of the patients and promotes shared decision making.
  • Promotes a culturally safe and respectful environment for better health literacy
  • Provides equal access to health education and training for all service users. 

Rationale

Why having such a statement important for providing a culturally safe healthcare environment?

Cultural safety has become highly important while delivering healthcare services to patients. Cultural safety goes beyond the cultural knowledge and understanding of the patients and emphasises the power imbalance that exists in the relationship of a patient and a practitioner (Richardson & Williams, 2007). It shifts the authority as well as the power to the patients who receive care and gives them the ultimate say as to whether the healthcare services offered was culturally safe or not. 

The concept provides empowerment to both the healthcare practitioner as well as the patient. It aims at eliminating the potential inequality or disparity existing in the relationship (Richardson & Williams, 2007). The fundamental of the culturally safe healthcare environment lies in preventing healthcare recipients from the imposition of the cultural belief of healthcare practitioners.

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