Delivering diversity: meanings of cultural competence among labor and delivery nurses in an urban hospital
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Nursing theory has contributed significantly to discussions of so-called culturally competent biomedical healthcare delivery. This study explores how Labor and Delivery nurses at a large, urban teaching hospital negotiate the care of a hyper-diverse patient population and construct working understandings of competence. Archival research, semi-structured interviews and participant observation demonstrate that cultural competence is not a distinct concept, but rather functions as an ambiguous symbol used to discuss a variety of challenges with advocating for patients and delivering care in communities faced with issues of racism, immigration, low socioeconomic status, and multiple comorbidities.