Healthcare Disparities for the Deaf

Hello, my name is Anthony Hume and my name is Christin Hume Today we are making a video as a project for my masters program

I am a nurse, and I am working on my masters degree So why are we talking about this topic? In the past we have had experience going to the hospital, she has been hospitalized before, and back then in the hospital we noticed many disparities for people who are Deaf The Deaf population is still subject to discrimination in healthcare Today we will use definitions from Healthy People 2030, and give examples of how it applies to the Deaf When we use the definitions borrowed from The US Department of Health and Human Services we can see many disparities for the Deaf

These are still heavily related to social status Many people avoid or alienate those who are deaf, because they are unwilling to put forth the extra effort to help involve others in communications Many Deaf people still are at an economic disadvantage because employers refuse to hire people who are deaf They are unwilling to make accommodations, they wont change or pay for anything to help Many people and employers look down on the Deaf or think they are just dumb

The Deaf have many obstacles to health care Often this is because healthcare professionals don't know how to identify and analyze the needs of people with various levels of hearing loss The Deaf have a strong history of being subjected to discrimination and exclusion Because of this history of exclusion many deaf people have low literacy and cant read health information According to a publication written by Hratinski and Wilbur in the Journal of Deaf Studies and Deaf Education stated that half of Deaf people who graduate high school still don't know how to read above a 4th grade level

Many Deaf people search for health information but find it frustrating and confusing 70% of Deaf people stated they searched social media to find health information These problems are the same for our state, New Mexico, and is the same for all of America Many countries have the same problems, some are better, some are worse We want to try to help healthcare professionals better understand how to communicate with people who are Deaf We will give a couple examples of things that might help

Communication is very important Some people can read lips, some people cannot Some people prefer to use sign language, some prefer lip reading and speaking If you ask a family member to interpret, this can be wrong You need to remember your patients have rights to privacy

You should ask the patient away from the family, is it ok for your family interpret? Its impossible to just change English to ASL Even if you have an interpreter you should still communicate simple and to the point Healthcare professionals commonly try to be wordy or use English that can be confusing When communicating through an interpreter try to be very to the point and clear When talking about test results saying something is positive or negative can be very confusing for deaf people

As another example using a phrase like "cold turkey", I wouldn't understand what you mean Electronic interpreters often don't work well We used an electronic interpreter before in a hospital but the video kept freezing and was blurry It was impossible to understand completely If you have a patient who is deaf, they might not know how to contact and interpreter

It is your responsibility as a healthcare professional to know how to get in contact with an interpreter that matches your patients needs Appropriate communication is whatever matches your patient If you try to talk to someone who is signing, Then you know you need to use sign language If you see they prefer to speak then go ahead and use speech You must match your patients preferences Some phrases like hearing impaired or disabled can be seen as very offensive

You should know the difference between big D Deaf means those who are involved in the Deaf community and are involved in Deaf culture Little d deaf means they are not involved in the deaf community or Deaf culture and prefer the hearing world and hearing culture We hope this helps healthcare professions in our community to better understand how to better involve those with a various range of hearing loss or who are Deaf Thanks for watching

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