Graduation Year


Date of Submission


Document Type

Campus Only Senior Thesis

Degree Name

Bachelor of Arts

Reader 1

Karina Corona

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© 2020 Colleen J Brennan


Latinos in the United States experience disparities related to health care, health outcomes, and mortality rates. Socioeconomic status, health insurance coverage, and other structural factors contribute to diminished access and utilization of health care for Latinos. However, access-related factors like language barriers, barriers of cultural familiarity, and discrimination negative impact Latino interactions with physicians. Physician initiatives currently include cultural and linguistic competency, but their effectiveness on patient outcomes remains questionable. Hence, this paper examines literature concerned with provider Latino cultural and/or linguistic (Spanish) competency and the effects of these initiatives on Latino patient outcomes. In addition, Latino patient perceptions of discrimination and bias are examined as they relate to language, ethnicity/culture, and the provider. A limited framework of Latino normative cultural values allows for close examination of quantitative and qualitative data. Specifically, this examination elucidates the role of cultural values within patient-provider interpersonal communication, independently and depending upon linguistic competency, and its effects upon the patient-provider interaction/relationship and Latino patient outcomes. Results indicate the importance of culture within patient-provider interpersonal interactions/relationships and present future research directions. The demographics and measurements of the literature reviewed and analyzed limit the overall generalizability of the results, but the directions for future research are generally consistent with the most recent applicable research.

This thesis is restricted to the Claremont Colleges current faculty, students, and staff.