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Facing Defacement: Factors influencing indigenous patients in provider-patient communication in Baja Verapaz, Guatemala

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Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/1928/10351

Facing Defacement: Factors influencing indigenous patients in provider-patient communication in Baja Verapaz, Guatemala

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Title: Facing Defacement: Factors influencing indigenous patients in provider-patient communication in Baja Verapaz, Guatemala
Author: Burton, Laura L. 1965-
Advisor(s): Schuetz, Janice
Committee Member(s): Lutgen-Sandvik, Pamela
Rao, Nagesh
Schaefer, Richard
Department: University of New Mexico. Dept. of Communication and Journalism
Subject: Health Communication
Intercultural Communication
Indigenous Health
Face
Defacement
provider-patient communication
LC Subject(s): Achi Indians--Health and hygiene--Social aspects
Communication in medicine--Guatemala--Baja Verapaz
Medical personnel--Guatemala--Attitudes
Degree Level: Masters
Abstract: The purpose of this ethnographic research was to explain the factors influencing Achi patients in provider-patient interactions in Baja Verapaz, Guatemala. I explored the complex intercultural challenges influencing the interactions between biomedically-trained providers and indigenous patients. Data collection involved participant observation and twenty-four informal field interviews in Guatemala. I utilized thematic analysis to identify and understand the factors influencing Achi patients when interacting with health care providers. Findings reveal that the Achi patients are influenced in provider-patient interactions by the reciprocal interaction among four major factors: environment, beliefs, emotional effect, and experiences. In addition, subthemes were identified for each of the major factors. A central finding of this research was a new construct, defacement, which is purposeful communication that dehumanizes by destroying other-face. Four levels of defacement, each increasing in intensity and dehumanizing content, emerged from the data: disregarding, degrading, regaño-ing, and abusing.
Graduation Date: December 2009
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/1928/10351


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