Experiences of Nurses Caring for Patients from Culturally and Linguistically Diverse Backgrounds: A Phenomenological Study

Angela Montaque, South Miami Hospital


The qualitative hermeneutic phenomenological study explored the lived experiences and perceptions of eight registered nurses caring for patients from culturally and linguistically diverse (CALD) backgrounds practicing at various health care organizations in Miami-Dade County, Florida where 65% of the population is Hispanic, who primarily speak Spanish. The study used semi structured interviews with open-ended questions and video recordings to explore the perceptions of the registered nurses. The modified van Kaam method advocated by Moustakas and the NVivo 10 software were used to analyze the data. Three research questions generated six primary themes during the data analysis. The five primary themes were based on the primary nodes elicited from the word frequency analysis imported from NVivo 10. The twelve sub-themes, and their linkage with the primary themes, were established from the interview questions. The sub- themes were (a) patient perception and expectation, (b) patient dissatisfaction with non-Hispanic staff, (c) nurse-patient relationship, (d) nurse frustration, (e) perceived outcome (f) nurse perception of disparity, (g) language barrier (h) perception of barrier, (i) language line, (j) family as interpreter, (k) language classes, and (l) cultural education and training. Findings provided a framework for health care organizations, nurse leaders, and registered to provide safe and effective care for patients from CALD background.