Racial/ethnic diversity management and cultural competency: The case of Pennsylvania hospitals

Academic Article


  • Major demographic trends are changing the face of America's labor pool, and healthcare managers increasingly face a scarcer and more diverse workforce. As a result, healthcare organizations (HCOs) must develop policies and practices aimed at recruiting, retaining, and managing a diverse workforce and must meet the demands of a more diverse patient population by providing culturally appropriate care and improving access to care for racial/ethnic minorities. Ultimately, the goal of managing diversity is to enhance workforce and customer satisfaction, to improve communication among members of the workforce, and to further improve organizational performance. Research on diversity management practices in HCOs is scarce, providing few guidelines for practitioners. This study attempted to close that gap. Results show that hospitals in Pennsylvania have been relatively inactive with employing diversity management practices, and equal employment requirements are the main driver of diversity management policy. The number and scope of diversity management practices used were not influenced by organizational or market characteristics. The results suggest that hospitals need to adopt diversity management practices for their workforces and need to pay particular attention to marketing and service planning activities that meet the needs of a diverse patient population.
  • Published In

    Digital Object Identifier (doi)

    Author List

  • Weech-Maldonado R; Dreachslin JL; Dansky KH; De Souza G; Gatto M
  • Start Page

  • 111
  • End Page

  • 124
  • Volume

  • 47
  • Issue

  • 2