43.70.610  <<  43.70.615 >>   43.70.617

Multicultural health awareness and education programIntegration into health professions basic education preparation curriculum.

(1) For the purposes of this section, "multicultural health" means the provision of health care services with the knowledge and awareness of the causes and effects of the determinants of health that lead to disparities in health status between different genders and racial and ethnic populations and the practice skills necessary to respond appropriately.
(2) The department, in consultation with the disciplining authorities as defined in RCW 18.130.040, shall establish, within available department general funds, an ongoing multicultural health awareness and education program as an integral part of its health professions regulation. The purpose of the education program is to raise awareness and educate health care professionals regarding the knowledge, attitudes, and practice skills necessary to care for diverse populations to achieve a greater understanding of the relationship between culture and health. The disciplining authorities having the authority to offer continuing education may provide training in the dynamics of providing culturally competent, multicultural health care to diverse populations. Any such education shall be developed in collaboration with education programs that train students in that health profession. A disciplining authority may require that instructors of continuing education or continuing competency programs integrate multicultural health into their curricula when it is appropriate to the subject matter of the instruction. No funds from the health professions account may be utilized to fund activities under this section unless the disciplining authority authorizes expenditures from its proportions of the account. A disciplining authority may defray costs by authorizing a fee to be charged for participants or materials relating to any sponsored program.
(3) By July 1, 2008, each education program with a curriculum to train health professionals for employment in a profession credentialed by a disciplining authority under chapter 18.130 RCW shall integrate into the curriculum instruction in multicultural health as part of its basic education preparation curriculum. The department may not deny the application of any applicant for a credential to practice a health profession on the basis that the education or training program that the applicant successfully completed did not include integrated multicultural health curriculum as part of its basic instruction.

NOTES:

Findings2006 c 237: "The legislature finds that women and people of color experience significant disparities from the general population in education, employment, healthy living conditions, access to health care, and other social determinants of health. The legislature finds that it shall be a priority for the state to develop the knowledge, attitudes, and practice skills of health professionals and those working with diverse populations to achieve a greater understanding of the relationship between culture and health and gender and health." [ 2006 c 237 § 1.]
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