Date of Award

2017

Document Type

Thesis

Department

Community Health

First Advisor

Kelly Gonzales

Subjects

Cross cultural communication, Cross-cultural counseling, Transcultural medical care -- United States, Diabetes -- Treatment -- Indians of North America, Diabetes -- Treatment -- Alaska Natives

DOI

10.15760/honors.389

Abstract

This inquiry examined culturally responsive diabetes interventions within the context of American Indian and Alaska Native (AI/AN) health. The role of history, culture, and resilience in shaping these approaches was determined. Additionally, past instances of abuse from healthcare workers and researchers highlighted the need for culturally competent education. A combination of a literature review and ethnography from events hosted by the local Portland, Oregon AI/AN community helped to address these questions and concerns. This study found that identifying determinants of health using Community-Based Participatory Research (CBPR) is the most effective. The health disparities experienced by AI/AN peoples today are predominantly due to a history of forced removal, genocidal tactics, and detrimental environmental policies. The main elements of a diabetes intervention that takes this history into account includes, connection to culture and the land, education on historical/ intergenerational trauma, and focusing on resilience and tribal sovereignty. The use of traditional foods, community gardens, and holistic fitness programs are some examples of strategies being used to treat diabetes by AI/AN peoples today. Future research should examine how the experiences of Indigenous peoples can better guide those in the field of public health working to achieve health equity for all.

Comments

An undergraduate honors thesis submitted in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the degree of Bachelor of Science in University Honors and Community Health Education.

Persistent Identifier

http://archives.pdx.edu/ds/psu/20341

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