Nurses’ Barriers to Care of Ethnic Minorities: A Qualitative Systematic Review

Jee Young Joo, Megan F. Liu

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

15 Citations (Scopus)


Several studies have reported nurses’ challenges when caring for ethnic minority patients from diverse cultures and who have language differences. This qualitative systematic review aims to identify and describe barriers to nursing practices and to understand the common perceptions that nurses in Western countries have when providing culturally competent care to ethnic minority patients. In this review, eight qualitative, peer-reviewed studies published from 2010 to 2018 are synthesized to identify barriers to nurses’ practice with ethnic minority patients. Qualitative systematic review protocols with thematic synthesis as a methodology were employed, and five common themes were identified: communication issues; unclear, missing, or culturally inappropriate care information and resources; insufficient cultural training and education; challenging therapeutic relationships with patients; and concern about quality of care. These results suggest that future studies should explore the cost-effectiveness of cultural competency training.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)760-771
Number of pages12
JournalWestern Journal of Nursing Research
Issue number9
Publication statusPublished - Jul 1 2020


  • barrier
  • cultural competence care
  • ethnic minority
  • nurse
  • qualitative studies
  • qualitative synthesis
  • qualitative systematic review

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Nursing


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