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Accid Emerg Nurs. 1996 Oct;4(4):208-15.

Concepts related to Chinese patients' perceptions of health, illness and person: issues of conceptual clarity.


Since most health professionals who care for Chinese patients are trained using Western medical educational systems, they are often unaware of the complex Chinese culture that influences their patients' responses to care. Discrepancies often exist between health professionals' and Chinese patients' perceptions of health and evaluations of the quality of care. In order to provide culturally sensitive care for this population, the complex Chinese traditional philosophies, such as the theory of yin and yang and the five phases, as well as the philosophies related to the concept of personhood including Confucianism, Taoism and Buddhism are examined first. This is because these theories and philosophies not only influence Chinese patients' values and beliefs, but also determine their perceptions of health, illness and nursing care. The discussion of implications for surgical cardiovascular nursing practice for this particular population are followed.

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