Developing cross-cultural healthcare workers: content, process and mentoring


  • Mark A. Strand North Dakota State University
  • Alice I Chen Medical Department, Shanxi Evergreen Service, Taiyuan, Shanxi, China
  • Lauren M Pinkston Clemson University



Culture, training, mentoring, healthcare


Career service in cross-cultural healthcare mission work is the ambition of many people around the world. However, premature termination of this expected long-term service mitigates achieving the goals of the individual and the organization.  This lingering challenge of high rates of missionary attrition impacts the long-term impact of the work and the health and well-being of the workers. One of the keys to reducing premature attrition is cross-cultural training for these individuals, granted it provides the right content, through the best medium, at the time of greatest perceived need by the missionary.  This paper applies the Dreyfus Model of skills acquisition to the process of mentoring career healthcare missionaries in a progressive manner, utilizing a mentoring method. These missionaries can flourish in their work and more effectively achieve their individual and organizational goals through strategic mentorship that clearly defines a pathway for growing their cross-cultural skills.

Author Biographies

Mark A. Strand, North Dakota State University

Professor, School of Pharmacy and Department of Public Health, College of Health Professions, North Dakota State University, Fargo, ND.

Alice I Chen, Medical Department, Shanxi Evergreen Service, Taiyuan, Shanxi, China

Medical Department, Shanxi Evergreen Service, Taiyuan, Shanxi, China

Lauren M Pinkston, Clemson University

Doctoral candidate, Institute of Family and Neighborhood Life, Clemson University, Clemson, SC


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How to Cite

Strand, M. A., Chen, A. I., & Pinkston, L. M. (2016). Developing cross-cultural healthcare workers: content, process and mentoring. Christian Journal for Global Health, 3(1), 57–72.