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WACHS Library: Cultural Awareness

A Note on Subject Terminology

  • In Australia the term "cultural awareness" is used with futher concepts defined as "cultural safety", "cultural respect", "cultural competence" and "culturally sensitive".
  • In the US & UK the term is "transcultural" as in "transcultural nursing" and "transcultural care"
  • A useful acronym is "CaLD" - Culturally and Linguistically Diverse

Cultural Competency at the WA Department of Health

A health system that is culturally competent:

  • acknowledges the benefits that diversity brings to Australian society
  • helps health providers and consumers to achieve the best, most appropriate care and services
  • enables self-determination and ensures a commitment to reciprocity for culturally and linguistically diverse consumers and their communities
  • holds governments, health organisations and managers accountable for meeting the needs of all members of the communities they serve.

The National Health and Medical Research Council have produced Cultural Competency in Health: A guide for policy, partnerships and participation (external site) to help policy makers and managers implement culturally competent policy and planning at all levels of the health system.

For further information see also WA Department of Health Cultural Competency (external website)

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