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Global Health Resources : Travel & Culture Shock

Information for when you go overseas

These resources are meant to assist you personally when you travel internationally to undertake global health initiatives. Culture shock is the personal disorientation a person may feel when experiencing an unfamiliar way of life due to immigration or a visit to a new country, a move between social environments, or simply travel to another type of life

Cultural competency is developing an awareness of the culture you are going into and understanding their belief system and values.

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How and Where to Search

Getting started...

Finding information on cultural competency, culture shock, reverse culture shock and related topics can be difficult often because there are many aspects and variations within these topics. For example, one can experience culture shock traveling or living abroad, while one can experience culture shock moving between different professional fields. Even the term "culture" can be used in myriad ways, sometimes completely unrelated to culture shock/diversity/competency, such as "cell cultures."

Here are some terms to try in addition to other topic-specific terms when beginning your search:

Cultural Competency
Cultural Diversity
Culture Shock
Reverse Culture Shock
Transcultural Nursing
Transcultural Care
Transcultural Psychiatry
Cultural Sensitivity
Reality Shock
Social Adjustment
Organizational Culture
Cross Cultural Differences
Cross Cultural Psychology
Culture Change

Some databases to search in:


CDC Travel Notices

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Travel Medicine book cover

Travel Medicine (2019)

"Today's travel medicine includes not only tourism and business travelers, but also incorporates volunteerism, medical care, migration, ecotourism, and more. Travel Medicine, 4th Edition, reflects all of these changes in the field while keeping you up to date with new vaccines and newly proposed regimens, pre-travel advice and post-travel screening, and all travel-related illnesses - for a one-stop, authoritative reference on all aspects of travel medicine"--Publisher's description.

Being There book cover

Being There: Learning to Live Cross-Culturally (2011)

"As they immerse themselves in foreign cultures and navigate the relationships that take shape, the authors of these essays, most of them trained anthropologists, find that accepting cultural difference is one thing, experiencing it is quite another. In tales that entertain as much as they illuminate, these writers show how the moral and intellectual challenges of living cross-culturally revealed to them the limits of their perception and understanding."--Description excerpt by publisher.

Culture Shock title

Culture Shock! Series

This book series gives an overview of the culture, customs, etiquette, and what to expect when traveling to specific countries.

Manual of Travel Medicine book cover

Manual of Travel Medicine (2019)

This book's intended audience is healthcare practitioners during their clinical consultations, as well as nurses and pharmacists. It also contains information that may be useful for travelers. "The book includes expert recommendations regarding e.g. immunizations, malaria prophylaxis, travellers’ diarrhea, altitude sickness, emerging infections, and non-infectious health issues encountered by travellers. It provides a practical approach to the pre-travel consultation and management of most issues that arise in medical care for travellers. In addition, it provides expert advice for high-risk travellers, e.g. those with immunosuppression, the elderly, pregnant women and young children."--Description from publisher.

Traveller's Health book cover

Traveller's Health (2012)

"Our ability to travel to the remotest parts of the world has been transformed, but the health risks are ever changing and increasing, and there may be no one to help when things go wrong. Whether you are travelling abroad for business or pleasure, this book provides essential, detailed, practical advice for journeys all over the world.This fifth edition is a complete revision of a best-selling, comprehensive and trusted guide. Travellers need to be increasingly well informed about health problems they may encounter abroad. Malaria prevention, the latest vaccine information and advice, cruise ship travel, jet lag, skiing, and accidents and injuries abroad: this book covers every important issue in travel medicine, with the emphasis firmly on self-help and prevention.This new edition brings together state-of-the-art background information and specialist advice from more than 70 leading experts from several countries, now in a more compact format. It is also available in an electronic edition. Travellers' Health is the standard source for the well-prepared traveller."--Description from publisher.