Cultural Humility: A Concept Analysis

J Transcult Nurs. 2016 May;27(3):210-7. doi: 10.1177/1043659615592677. Epub 2015 Jun 28.


Diversity is being increasingly recognized as an area of emphasis in health care. The term cultural humility is used frequently but society's understanding of the term is unclear. The aim of this article was to provide a concept analysis and a current definition for the term cultural humility. Cultural humility was used in a variety of contexts from individuals having ethnic and racial differences, to differences in sexual preference, social status, interprofessional roles, to health care provider/patient relationships. The attributes were openness, self-awareness, egoless, supportive interactions, and self-reflection and critique. The antecedents were diversity and power imbalance. The consequences were mutual empowerment, partnerships, respect, optimal care, and lifelong learning. Cultural humility was described as a lifelong process. With a firm understanding of the term, individuals and communities will be better equipped to understand and accomplish an inclusive environment with mutual benefit and optimal care.

Keywords: cultural humility; nursing and cultural competence.

MeSH terms

  • Attitude of Health Personnel*
  • Cultural Competency*
  • Ego
  • Humans
  • Self Concept
  • Social Behavior
  • Transcultural Nursing*