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Reflection is a way that helps in assisting the nurses to develop some important skills as well as competencies while they are on placement within the clinical settings. Reflection allows the nurses to make sense of the proceedings that have occurred in the clinical settings along with critically examining of not only their own behaviors, role, or beliefs but of others too (Scheel, Peters, & Meinertz Mobjerg, 2017). This reflection is based on Gibbs’ reflective cycle (1988) that encompasses two sections out of which the first explores the content of the group task and the second focuses on my personal reflection and experience. The first section would be regarding me and my team members’ reaction regarding the task and how this has enhanced our understanding of the issues that have been faced by the Australia’s Indigenous peoples. The second section will focus on communication and leadership skills shown by me and my team members. Along with this it will also focus on my personal strengths and weaknesses by working as a member of the group. At last it would be reflecting on how this experience has helped me in understanding the role played by the groups in contemporary healthcare settings.
I was allocated a group task where I was supposed to work in a team and as a team we have to work in a multicultural health care setting where we should implicate certain strategies that would have been helpful in enhancing the participation of Indigenous Australians in the health care workforce. Our task was to enhance the engagement of Indigenous Australians in the health care workforce. So, before moving ahead we did some research and we found that Indigenous Australians, experiences considerably poorer health facilities and outcomes as compared with the non-Indigenous Australians. Their life expectancy is also less than that of non-Indigenous (AIHW, 2014a). Not only this but, we found that there are so many factors that are related with and eventually results into various Indigenous health problems. And, ultimately the problem was revolving around the culture i.e., cultural safety, cultural competence, and cultural awareness (Harriss et al. 2018). We also found that the ability of the Indigenous primary healthcare plays a significant role in order to meet the health needs of Indigenous Australians and it is dependent on the motivation, skills, and experience of its workforce and this sector faces various challenges when it comes to building up as well as maintaining a stable and strong workforce (Jongen et al. 2019). So, we decided that to achieve the goal of this task i.e., to enhance the engagement of Indigenous Australians in the health care workforce, REM framework would be suitable to be applied. REM framework stands for Respect; Engagement; and Moving forward which are considered to be a collaborative framework in order build Indigenous cultural competence (Power et al. 2016).
Working in a multicultural setting was quite a difficult task for all of us as there are a lot of challenges that could be faced while working with Indigenous Australians and the most challenging one is the language barrier (Jongen et al. 2019). To be honest, I was not confident when I was allocated this task and neither my other team mates were as for working in a team, an effective team work is required and before actually working on it we were not sure if we all will be able to this without meeting each other in person and just by discussing and implemented things meeting and sharing things online. But, later on, the feeling changed as we as a team have erudite the uptake of formal as well as informal learning prospects. This task has deepened mine as well as my team mates’ professional competence by considering the beliefs and values along with respecting, engaging, and moving forward framework. This has enhanced our institutional knowledge along with the self regulatory skills that are linked with the cultural diversity. We were stunned when we get to know the insights of the discrimination faced by Indigenous Australians and this task of enhancing their engagement has developed cultural competences among us (Rittle, 2015). Working as a team in such task has improved my knowledge, communication skills, leadership skills along with the teamwork competence.
Working in a team has enable me to facilitate cultural assessment and has developed effective communication skills which will be helpful later on for me to improve the patient’s health outcomes. Culturally diverse perspective of people regarding the Indigenous Australians has given me an insight into the cultural sensitivity. Though this task, I have developed a sense of valuing people more who belongs to a diversified community, it has made me understand the significant of adaptations in order to provide health services in such a way that it enhance the engagement and helped me to reduce the disparities that are faced by the Indigenous Australians (Durey & Thompson, 2012). It has been evaluated that Indigenous healthcare services directly depends on the workforce and their efforts in order to make the care delivery more efficient, effective, integrated, and patient-centered (Macfarlane et al. 2011). According to Australian Health Ministers' Advisory Council, (2017) it has also been evaluated while working in team for this task that are six priority areas that are needed to be focused in order to build a strong, stable, and supported health workforce. These priority areas improving the recruitment as well as retention of the Indigenous Australians health professionals; improving the skills and capacity of the workforces; supporting the sector with the goal of providing culturally-safe as well as responsive workplace environments; motivating and increasing the number of Indigenous Australians students to study in health sector; improving rate of completion/graduation along with the rate of employment for the Indigenous health students; and the last priority would be improving the information regarding the planning and policy development for the health workforce.
While working for a team-based task it has been analysed that in order to develop critical skills that would be relevant while working in a team for an Indigenous community, it is significant to bridge the cultural gap as well as the challenged that are faced among the diversified community. These cultural gaps and challenges could be health literacy cultural tradition, language, and the pre assumptions of people regarding the culture. The initial step in order to bridge this gap would be the cultural awareness. Focusing on the cultural competence and cultural safety would help in achieving the goal of enhancing the engagement. Preserving, implementation of the official polices for Indigenous community, and respecting the cultural diversities is a way of harmonising everything (Truong, Paradies & Priest, 2014). Focusing on my own strengths and weakness through this task, my strengths entail innovative practices that I have learned and acquired from my team mates that will help me in building effective health care provider teams in my future course of practice. Effective communication and management skills are also what I see as my strengths. My weakness that I have detected so far in this task is getting panicked whenever any conflict arising situation comes up however, effective communication and management skills that I see as my strengths helps me in overcoming this weakness.
In the conclusion, this reflective essay based on the team work task has provided me a succinct reflection regarding my experience working as a health officer in a community that is diversified that works with the goal of providing care services and enhancing the engagement among the Indigenous Australians in the healthcare workforce peacefully without any conflicts. This experience has been more of a course of learning in which I found myself being able to gather knowledge regarding a wide range of aspects, challenges as well as the benefits that can be faced during this task. Through this, I find myself competent as I have developed critical skills that have enhanced my capabilities of working in a team based tasks. The skills that have been developed so far by working for this task are effective communication, collaboration, leadership skills, context, self reflection, and cultural understanding regarding Indigenous Australians groups. I am certain that the skills I have developed with the help of this task will be favorable for me in my future course of practice also and will be helping me in my growth and development as a competent health officer. In my future course of practice I would implement the learning from this task whenever I will work with not just Indigenous Australians but also with the any other culturally diversified community.
Australian Health Ministers' Advisory Council. (2017). National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health workforce strategic framework 2016–2023. Retrieved from https://www1.health.gov.au/internet/main/publishing.nsf/Content/4A716747859075FFCA257BF0001C9608/$File/National-Aboriginal-and-Torres-Strait-Islander-Health-Workforce-Strategic-Framework.pdf
Australian Institute of Health & Welfare (AIHW). (2014a0. Mortality and life expectancy of Indigenous Australians: 2008-2012. Retrieved form http://www.aihw.gov.au/WorkArea/DownloadAsset.aspx?id=60129548468
Durey, A., & Thompson, S. C. (2012). Reducing the health disparities of Indigenous Australians: time to change focus. BMC Health Services Research, 12, 151. https://doi.org/10.1186/1472-6963-12-151
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Harriss, L. R. et al. (2018). Screening for depression in young Indigenous people: Building on a unique community initiative. Australian Journal of Primary Health, 24(4), 343-349.
Jongen, C., McCalman, J., Campbell, S., & Fagan, R. (2019). Working well: strategies to strengthen the workforce of the Indigenous primary healthcare sector. BMC Health Services Research, 19(1), 910. https://doi.org/10.1186/s12913-019-4750-5
Macfarlane F, et al. (2011). A new workforce in the making? A case study of strategic human resource management in a whole-system change effort in healthcare. Journal of Health and Organization Management, 25(1), 55–72.
Power, T., Virdun, C., Sherwood, J., Parker, N., Van Balen, J., Gray, J., & Jackson, D. (2016). REM: A Collaborative Framework for Building Indigenous Cultural Competence. Journal of Transcultural Nursing : Official Journal of the Transcultural Nursing Society, 27(5), 439–446. https://doi.org/10.1177/1043659615587589
Rittle, C. (2015). Multicultural nursing: Providing better employee care. SAGE Journals, 63(12), 532-538.
Schumann Scheel, L., Peters, M., & Meinertz Mobjerg, A. C. (2017). Reflection in the training of nurses in clinical practice settings: a scoping review protocol. JBI database of systematic reviews and implementation reports, 15(12), 2871–2880. https://doi.org/10.11124/JBISRIR-2017-003482
Truong, M., Paradies, Y., & Priest, N. (2014). Interventions to improve cultural competency in healthcare: a systematic review of reviews. BMC Health Services Research, 14, 99. https://doi.org/10.1186/1472-6963-14-99
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