Training to Enable/Achieve Culturally Sensitive Healthcare (TEACH)

Award Information
Agency: Department of Health and Human Services
Branch: N/A
Contract: 1R43MD001642-01
Agency Tracking Number: MD001642
Amount: $103,600.00
Phase: Phase I
Program: SBIR
Awards Year: 2006
Solicitation Year: 2006
Solicitation Topic Code: N/A
Solicitation Number: PHS2006-2
Small Business Information
HUBZone Owned: N
Woman Owned: N
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: N
Principal Investigator
 (215) 542-1400
Business Contact
Phone: (215) 542-1400
Research Institution
DESCRIPTION (provided by applicant): Although achieving cultural competence and responsive healthcare delivery in one of the most important public health goals, professional training of healthcare providers in culturally sensitive communication with patients is severely lacking. Public health researchers have recognized this critical shortfall in providers' skills, and have called for training curricula and educational tools that can be used to increase the knowledge and abilities of providers regarding culturally competent healthcare delivery. To meet this training need, CHI Systems, Inc. will rapidly develop and deploy TEACH, a computer-based interactive trainer that will enhance providers' skills at delivering culturally sensitive communication and care to a specific population ~ African American women who have breast cancer. There are many barriers that these women face to successful cancer prevention, treatment and palliation. In particular, the inability of providers to take into account cultural and language differences and variance of health beliefs, values, and practices impedes the delivery of responsive healthcare to this population. TEACH will harness the power of existing computer-based technologies to create a compelling and engaging training experience which enables providers to practice and develop these essential skills in a realistic yet risk-free setting. At the heart of this innovative system will be a virtual patient that can exhibit both emotional variability and personality-based variability. Training content will come from a review and synthesis of the research literature; and more specific cultural content will come from the transcription and analysis of existing tapes of ethnographic interviews with 91 African American women with breast cancer. When completed, TEACH will provide a realistic, effective, event- driven scenario that brings this virtual patient to life, and by doing so, will train providers in the often overlooked, cultural aspects of care, communication and rapport.

* information listed above is at the time of submission.

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