The Importance Of National CLAS Standards

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National CLAS-Standards for Cultural Competence in Healthcare Service Delivery
Health care disparities and inequities among ethnic and racial minorities have been persistent in the U.S. healthcare system. Health disparities occur when one group of individuals face poor access to care, disproportionate rates of disease or death, and lack of quality in healthcare delivery (Longest, 2016). With the efforts of healthcare reform and the passage of the Patient Protection and Affordable are Act of 2010 (ACA) we are now seeing slow but steady movement towards addressing the inequities and disparities in healthcare for racially and ethnically diverse populations. Under the ACA, there are a number of provisions which aim to reduce the disparities that exist and improve the quality of services. In doing so, we can provide greater health promotion and literacy among underserved minority groups whose cultural makeup often goes ignored.
The ACA policy has affirmed the need for increasing cultural competence in the healthcare setting and this implementation has begun to create a system change. To address the disparities in the healthcare system
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The also support the need for community assessment in addressing population health to gather data and identify gaps in health services. Lastly, National CLAS Standards sets out to explore ways in which health care providers and professionals can provide culturally competent care in healthcare service delivery. Due to the broad nature of the National CLAS Standards this paper will focus on how this framework for cultural competency was developed, its impact on health disparities in minority groups, why this is an important policy to address health inequities and the important role of social workers in delivery of National CLAS Standards in health care

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