AIDS Education and Training Center-National Multicutural Center

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Case Studies:
Alternative Medicine

Case studies of provider to patient encounters covering cultural gaps in gender, age, health literacy, trust and other socio-ethnic barriers. Cases also cover intra-ethnic variations among patients and the need to avoid stereotyping in one's approach to care and treatment. 
The following are chosen from the AETC-NMC collection of case studies and focus on scenarios involving alternative medicine:
Case Study 2

James Smith, a 32-year-old patient of African descent diagnosed with AIDS, presents to an outpatient clinic for management of his condition. After engaging in an introductory conversation with the patient, the social worker obtained a social history assessment by integrating Kleinman’s eight cultural questions.  Read more...

Case Study 6

Mr. J, a 43-year-old man of Caribbean descent, has been HIV-positive for the past five years. He has kept his diagnosis a secret from his family, including his wife and two sons, as well as his friends and co-workers. During his last visit three months ago, his physician explained that his viral load has continued to increase and his CD4 count has dropped from 550 to 300. Read more...

Case Study 10

A Vietnamese woman was rushed to the hospital by her adult children. The emergency room personnel discovered dark red welts running up her arms, shoulders and chest, yet the only presenting complaint was dizziness. When questioned, her son explained that he had rubbed her body with a quarter. Read more...

Case Study 14

Antonio is a 32-year-old Latino who has been living with HIV for the past 6 years. Antonio has lived in the United States for 17 years, although all of his family still lives in Guatemala. When he shows up for treatment, his health care provider realizes that Antonio has not been adhering to his HIV treatment regimen and that his viral load is increasing. Read more...

Case Study 20

Sharon is a 31-year-old woman of Caribbean origin. She was diagnosed with HIV in 1994 and has adhered to her care recommendations only sporadically. She attended one clinic visit two years ago and one visit last year, prior to this pregnancy. She presents to the practice in her second trimester of pregnancy. Read more...

Case Study 25

Joe, a 35-year-old homeless Iroquois veteran, with no recent family contact and a history of alcohol abuse, receives care in a large urban clinic in the Pacific Northwest. Joe was diagnosed with HIV four years ago. Read more...

Case Study 33

Joseph is a 58 year old African American man diagnosed with HIV five years ago and was newer prescribed antiretroviral medication (ARVs). He has no history of opportunistic infections but is diagnosed with hypertension, hyperlipidemia, and obesity. Read more...


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