Achieving cultural appropriateness in health promotion programs: targeted and tailored approaches

Health Educ Behav. 2003 Apr;30(2):133-46. doi: 10.1177/1090198102251021.


It is a truism of health education that programs and interventions will be more effective when they are culturally appropriate for the populations they serve. In practice, however, the strategies used to achieve cultural appropriateness vary widely. This article briefly describes five strategies commonly used to target programs to culturally defined groups. It then explains how a sixth approach, cultural tailoring, might extend these strategies and enhance our ability to develop effective programs for cultural groups. The authors illustrate this new approach with an example of cultural tailoring forcancer prevention in a population of lower income urban African American women.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Black or African American / psychology*
  • Breast Neoplasms / ethnology
  • Breast Neoplasms / prevention & control
  • Cross-Cultural Comparison
  • Cultural Diversity*
  • Feeding Behavior / ethnology
  • Female
  • Health Education / methods*
  • Health Knowledge, Attitudes, Practice
  • Health Promotion / methods*
  • Humans
  • Mammography / psychology
  • Mass Screening / psychology
  • Religion and Psychology
  • Social Identification
  • Urban Population*
  • White People / psychology