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Cultural Interview

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  • Pages: 7
  • Word count: 1714
  • Category: Republic

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M.S. is an eighty-one year old female Latin female. She was born in the Dominican Republic, in a city called Santo Domingo. “Santo Domingo, known officially as Santo Domingo de Guzmán, is the capital and largest city in the Dominican Republic. Its metropolitan population reached exactly 2,907,100 in 2010. The city is located on the Caribbean Sea, at the mouth of the Ozama River. Founded by Bartholomew Columbus in 1496, it is the oldest continuously inhabited European settlement in the Americas, and was the first seat of Spanish colonial rule in the New World (Rogers & Rogers. 2009)”. The usual climate in Santo Domingo differs slightly, because the tropical help lessen the heat and humidity throughout the year. M. S. ethnicity is Latin/Hispanic. She migrated to the United States less than five years ago. M. S. came to the states to live her family.

M.S. original language is Spanish. Spanish is a language that originated in Spain. “It is also called Castilian after the particular area of Spain, Castile, where it originated. Early in its history, the Spanish dictionary was enriched by its dealings with Basque and Arabic, and the language continues to embrace foreign words from a variety of other languages, as well as developing new words. Spanish was taken most notably to the Americas as well as to Africa and Asia-Pacific with the expansion of the Spanish Empire between the fifteenth and nineteenth centuries, where it became the most influential language for government and business (Painter. 2011)”. M. S. can speak a few words in English, but not complete sentences. Her voice tone is average. Her pronunciation and enunciation of English words is clear and precise. Uncertain if her pronunciation and enunciation in her Spanish dialect was correct. M. S. is expressive with her entire body when she communicates. She is accepting of touch with communication. She does not startle or pull away. M. S. reciprocates soft touch during conversation. The pitch in M.S voice changes when she is trying to get her point across.

She enjoys calling her family and talking to her grandchildren. M.S. responds to others with her body movement and her words. She always discusses issues with her family by being firm and direct.

M.S. does not change when her space is invaded. Distance in conversation was a foot apart. She is without difficulty standing close to friends, family or co-workers. M.S. presents with a sense of order of her furniture in her space. M. S. Is a friendly person and does not show distress when strangers touch her. She feels loved when family and friends touch her. M. S. was comfortable with the distance between her and me.

M.S. is in fair health. She has been diagnosed with type 2 diabetes, peripheral vascular disease, and a left heel diabetic ulcer. She has never been married. She has two children, both are adult sons. M. S. parents are deceased. M. S. defines social activities as events or gatherings in which take place inside or outside of the home for the purpose of socialization. M. S. enjoys activities such as family functions with good Caribbean food. Her most enjoyed hobby is baking although she admits she has always wanted to learn how to knit. M. S. believes in a supreme being. M. S. has immense faith in God. She prays daily and reads her bible often. M.S. is a reserve catholic. “ The Latin and Eastern Catholic Churches together form the “Catholic Church”, or “Roman Catholic Church”, the world’s largest single religious group and the largest Christian denomination, comprising over half of all Christians (1.1 billion Christians of 2.1 billion) and nearly one-sixth of the world’s population. It comprises 23 component “particular churches” (also called “rites” in the Second Vatican Council’s Decree on the Eastern Catholic Churches), all of which recognize a primacy of jurisdiction of the Bishop of Rome and are in full communion with the Holy See and each other (Haught, 2010)”.

M. S. is the matriarch in her family. A matriarch or clan-mother or chief’ is a mother, or other female individual in a family who is accountable for the welfare of the family or affiliation. The term is usually applied to the eldest female in an extended family, by who virtue of her position has a mark of approved establishment because others have faith in her. The title can be inherited, primarily by the last daughter. In many matriarchal societies she is responsible primarily for distributing food and also she can be the healer of the clan. A matriarch can never dominate or influence over the members of the community because matriarchies always decide by consensus. Her family comes to her for insight on individual and life issues. As a child M. S. grandmother had great influence in her life. M. S. believes in the fellowship and support of family.

Since coming to America, she has grown to respect the practice of government. “Government of the Dominican Republic takes place in a structure of a representative democracy, whereby the President of the Dominican Republic is both head of state and head of government, and of a multi- party system. Executive power is exercised by the government. Legislative power is vested in the two chambers of the National Congress. The Judiciary is independent of the executive and the legislature. Economic Government policy has been more or less consistent, but some administrations have been forced to adopt unpopular austerity programs due to recession and a deteriorating economic situation. After the recession of the 1980s, successive Dominican governments have attempted to maintain strong economic growth while keeping inflation under control. Priorities have included not only the sale of state-owned enterprises and an end to subsidies to these bodies but also considerable investment in roads and other infrastructural development related to tourism and manufacturing.

The damage caused by Hurricane Georges in September 1998, estimated at US$2 billion, also required outstanding government funding, but part of this money was provided by grants and loans from multilateral institutions such as the World Bank (Rogers & Rogers, 2009)”. The PRD parliament elected in 2000 intends to develop free-market reforms, continuing to privatize government assets, attract foreign investment, and endorse the nation as a travel destination and unwavering offshore business trade location.

M.S. thinks work builds character. M. S. believes when a person makes a commitment to do what is right and acceptable, versus wrong he or she have the foundation for a strong work ethic. M. S. does not currently work. In the past she worked as a nanny for a couple with two children in New Jersey. It was one of the most rewarding times in her life. She enjoyed working with small children. She loved the way the family sat down to dinner and praised her cooking. She had even began to teach the couples young daughter how to bake cookies. M. S. describes her present job as a patient in a dilemma of possibly losing her foot with a diabetic ulcer. She describes the pain she lives with daily. M. S. ponders the thought of never walking again. She voices not wanting to be seen as handicapped or less than a person. M. S. understands the process in her journey to becoming well again. She is thankful for the love of family and her faith in God to help her in her current role as a patient. M. S. speaks of a future job of owning a small local Caribbean restaurant. She can recall since living in Cincinnati the difficulty of finding a restaurant with Caribbean food.

M. S. is present oriented to time. She is concerned with the time for her medication. She focuses on meal time. She is conscience on time for her insulin injections. She wears a wrist watch to monitor time. M. S. is oriented to clock time verses social time. She recognizes the importance of her dressing changes to her foot. She remains knowledgeable of her medication regimen. CULTURAL INTERVIEW 7

M.S. does not believe in fate of karma. She believes “whatever is God’s will, will be”. She does believe in supernatural beings as in the battle of good and evil in the spiritual realm. M. S. believes family does not have an assigned time to visit. She believes family comes first. Family does not need a planned event of invitation to meet. Because there is no such thing as health insurance in the Dominican Republic good health is held in high regard. Well a child is sick, they are watched over very carefully. They are not usually taken to the doctor or hospital. Often the parents, of the child seek out the Shaman of the community. The parents are given an ointment or an elixir of herbs to drinks and the community prays for the best. Good health is viewed as a state of physical, mental, and social welfare and the privation of disease or other abnormal circumstances.

It is not a fixed condition. Constant change and variation to stress result in homeostasis. René Dubos, often quoted in nursing education, says, “The state of health or disease is the appearance of the success or failure undergone by the organism in its exertion to respond adaptively to ecological challenges. M. S. views good health as feeling good, day of getting out of bed without pain or affliction. M. S. views poor health as not having enough to eat to nourish your body and soul. There are many people in the Dominican Republic who cannot afford health care. They cannot afford to eat for a day, much less the remedies of the Shaman. These people are amongst the forgotten. There is no one to advocate for them. They are often left to die. M. S. is thankful to have a loving and supportive family: she is also grateful to God she can now live here in the United States with them.


Giger, J. N. (2013). Transcultural nursing: Assessment & intervention (6th ed.). St. Louis, MO: Elsevier. Haught, J. (2010). What is Religion. Hudson, NJ: Paulist Press. Painter, R. (2011, August 1). Our Dominican Republic. p. 16. Rogers, L. & Rogers, B. (2009). Dominican Republic. New York, NY: Children’s Press.

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