Sixth National Conference on Quality Health Care for Culturally Diverse Populations: Preconference Sessions The EBAN Experience: A Novel Approach to Health Disparities Education for Health Professionals

Preconference A-6 The EBAN experience: A novel approach to health disparities education for health professionals

The EBAN Experience: A Novel Approach to Health Disparities Education for Health Professionals
Sunday, September 21, 2008: 9:00 AM-12:00 PM, Minn Marriott, 4th Floor - Ballroom 1
The EBAN Experience is a unique, interactive educational environment that seeks to transform healthcare professionals’ awareness of the impact of patients’ culture on their health and care. The EBAN Experience is based on an educational model that recognizes that simulation and group discussion are the best educational modalities to stimulate changes in the participant’s “affective: attitudinal” domain. The simulations and group discussion take place in a space of 40 x 60 feet, divided into two major parts.
            The first part includes tables with information about health disparities, and over 100 “iconic” palm-sized objects. Sixteen individuals participate in the experience at one time. The participants are asked to select an object that, to them, symbolizes their own culture, family history or heritage. They take the object with them into the second space. The second space is a 40 foot square containing a circle of 16 chairs, and a quartet of patient “environments”, one in each corner of the square. The seated participants are given an opportunity to share with the group their reasons for choosing the object in their hands. In so doing, they establish for themselves a sense of their own culture, while at the same time generating a sense of sharing and respect within the group of 16.
            The group is divided into four teams of four. Each team rotates in a synchronized fashion through four environments, learning about health disparities of a single culture. The environments are interactive spaces containing realistic museum-type exhibits and video presentations through which patients’ stories are told.  Participants engage in the environments by entering them, viewing video scenarios about the patient’s experience, then reconvening in the central discussion circle and then sharing their experience of the exhibits with the other 12 participants. Each of the four groups of four participants is exposed to a unique culture by using customized, professionally scripted content. The environments relate to four themes: the community’s impact on health disparities, disparities and clinical settings, nutrition and therapies, and coordination and access to care. When the four groups convene in the central discussion circle they have the opportunity to share with the other participants information that the other participants have not heard or seen.  This approach is designed to facilitate discussion and enhance retention.
            Health professionals, after participating in the experience, are anticipated to have a deeper understanding of the root causes and consequences of healthcare disparities, improved confidence in recognizing barriers to care, models for improving collaboration, and access to culture-specific online tools to improve their understanding of health disparities.  A complementary web-site will provide culture-specific information useful to clinicians in caring for patients from specific cultures.  The EBAN Experience is conceived as a mobile project, which would tour the United States, in tandem with an interactive exhibit specifically designed for the public, for presentation at science museums.
           The EBAN Experience is a collaboration of the HealthPartners Institute for Medical Education, the Science Museum of Minnesota and the Mixed Blood Theater.
  • Diverstiy Rx handout.pdf (259.2 kB)
  • Presentation Information:

    Program: Preconference Sessions
    Primary Category: Cultural Competence Training
    Subtopics: Curricula development, Continuing education/on-the-job learning, Assessing learning/performance on cultural competence/disparity reduction

    Region Addressed by Presentation: National
    Organization: Non-Profit Organization/Association
    Keywords: Disparities, Education, Cultures, Interactive, Curriculum


    Carl Patow, MD, MPH, MBA , HealthPartners Institute for Medical Education, Bloomington, MN
      Executive Director
      HealthPartners Institute for Medical Education
      8170 33rd Avenue South
      Bloomington MN, USA 55425

      Phone: 952-883-7185
      Fax: 952-883-7181
      Email Address:

      Biographical Sketch:
      Carl Patow, MD, MPH, MBA is responsible for health professional education for HealthPartners, an integrated health delivery system headquartered in Minneapolis, Minnesota. He has a particular interest in interactive adult learning, and has been recognized nationally for excellence in educational innovation by the AIAMC and ACME. He is a member of the ACGME Board of Directors and Co-chair of the Patient and Family Centered Care Advisory Group. He is co-chair of the steering committee of the Simulation Center for Patient Safety at Metropolitan State University .

    Robert Garfinkle , Science Museum of Minnesota, St Paul, MN
      Program Director
      Science Museum of Minnesota
      120 West Kellog Boulevard
      St Paul MN, USA 55102

      Phone: 651 221 9428
      Email Address:

      Biographical Sketch:
      Robert Garfinkle started with the Science Museum of Minnesota in 1992 as an exhibit developer and evaluation specialist for a variety of projects. In 1996 he began leading large-scale traveling exhibit projects, including Raise the Roof (opened in 1998) and Playing With Time (2002). In collaboration with the Lemelson Center for the Study of Invention and Innovation at the Smithsonian's National Museum of American History, Mr. Garfinkle led the project team for the AAM-award winning exhibit Invention at Play (2002). He has consulted with other institutions on project management practices, project leadership, and conceptual planning. He currently is leading the Science Museum of Minnesota team developing a major national traveling exhibit about race and human variation in collaboration with the American Anthropological Association, due to open in early 2007.