A culturally safe public health research framework
Jeffs, Lynda Caron
The concept of cultural safety arose in Aotearoa me Te Waipounamu/New Zealand in the late 1980's in response to the differential health experience and negative health outcomes of the first nation people of Aotearoa me Te Waipounamu/New Zealand, the New Zealand Maori. It was introduced and developed by Maori nurses initially, as they recognised the effect culture had on health and understood safety as a common nursing concept. The concept of cultural safety has developed into a discipline which is taught as part of all nursing and midwifery curricula in Aotearoa me Te Waipounamu/New Zealand. As cultural safety has developed the concept of culture has been extended to include people who differ from the nurse by reason of: age, migrant status, sexual preference, socioeconomic status, religious persuasion, gender, ethnicity, and in Aotearoa me Te Waipounamu/New Zealand, the Treaty of Waitangi status of the nurse and recipient/s of her/his care. Nationally and internationally, health experience and health outcomes are poorer for people of minority group status than for people who are part of the dominant group. Public-health research is therefore generally conducted on, or with, people with minority group status. Public-health researchers, by education, are members of the dominant culture and may be unaware that their own and their clients' responses may relate to one/other or both cultures being diminished, demeaned or disempowered. Experience has demonstrated that public health researchers do not always ensure the safety of their own culture or the culture being researched. This study' s objective was to develop a flexible, culturally safe public health research framework for researchers to use when researching people who are culturally different from themselves. The study will argue that the use of such a framework will contribute significantly to improved health outcomes for people with minority status and will assist the movement towards emancipatory social change. The methods undertaken included: gaining permission from Irihapeti Ramsden, the architect of cultural safety to undertake the research, conducting a literature review, consideration of primary sources and their key concepts, consulting widely with people in the field of public health and cultural safety, self reflecting on the writers own personal and professional experience and finally designing the culturally safe public health research framework.
Advisor: Heckert, Karen
Degree Name: Master of Public Health
Degree Discipline: Public Health
Publisher: University of Otago
Research Type: Thesis