General information

Diversity Education for Incumbent Employees
Community Hospital of the Monterey Peninsula’s program for preparing employees for careers in allied health

Background

The Monterey peninsula has a diverse population, ranging from the affluent residents of Pebble Beach and Carmel to the diverse communities of Seaside and the Salinas Valley. In order to better understand and skillfully serve this diverse population, the Community Hospital of Monterey Peninsula provided several educational opportunities to staff, including:

  • English as a Second Language courses, offered to improve communication and comprehension skills. Additional courses were offered to improve English pronunciation.
  • Spanish Medical Terminology for English speakers.
  • Cultural Competency Courses, which were available to all hospital employees.

Methods

Community Hospital of the Monterey Peninsula partnered with Monterey Adult School and an instructor from Pacific Grove Adult School to offer various courses:

  • English as a Second Language courses were taught at Monterey Adult School. Monterey Adult School contracted with an outside provider, Pronunciation in Action, to provide pronunciation courses.
  • Spanish Medical Terminology courses were taught through a direct partnership with an instructor from Pacific Grove Adult School.
  • A video, “Cultural Competency: Just Good Healthcare,” was created and incorporated into employee orientation services. A workshop on managing diversity was developed and presented to staff.

Key partners

  • Sherry Felton Doctors, Instructor at Pacific Grove Adult School who taught Spanish Medical Terminology course.
    1025 Lighthouse Avenue
    Pacific Grove, CA 93950
  • Pronunciation in Action, a small organization that provides pronunciation coaching.
    • Stefani Mistretta, 831-392-1037, stefani@pronunciationinaction.com
  • Monterey Adult School, offered English as a Second Language Courses.
    222 Casa Verde Way
    Monterey, CA 93940
    • Dan Cutler, ESL Instructor
    • Ann Kilty, Principal

Outcomes

Major successes include:

  • English skills improved among minority employees. Employees not only improved their comprehension of English through English as a Second Language courses, they improved their ability to communicate through pronunciation courses.
  • Employees increased ability to communicate in culturally and linguistically appropriate manner. Through training in diversity and Spanish Medical Terminology, staff increased their ability to understand and communicate with diverse patients.

Unexpected challenges

Community Hospital of the Monterey Peninsula faced several obstacles in its efforts, including:

  • Hospital cost-cutting measures forced staff to reduce the amount of time spent in staff meetings, limiting the opportunity to present diversity and cultural competency videos/workshops. These measures also prevented the introduction of training aimed at providing skills to employees who provide interpretation services in their jobs, which would have required not only additional staff time for training, but potentially a pay differential.
  • Cost-cutting measures also left many departments short-staffed, limiting the ability of staff to attend trainings during the work day.
  • There was difficulty determining the appropriate times to offer classes in order to accommodate staff schedules.
  • Pacific Grove Adult School saw a change in principals, severing the existing relationship between Community Hospital of the Monterey Peninsula and the School. The incoming principal felt that the School could not afford to continue partnering with the Community Hospital of the Monterey Peninsula.

Commands