Health Care Provider and Faith Diversity

Health Care Provider and Faith Diversity
Health Care Provider and Faith Diversity

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Health Care Provider and Faith Diversity


 The concept of spirituality has gained popularity in healthcare.  Faith diversity and spirituality are core components that define people and shape their experiences. This paper implements feedback from the previous works to provide valuable insights into the unique needs, customs, and rituals that can be integrated in healthcare faith diversity.  The paper aims at addressing the seven world view questions and to provide a summary of the comparative analysis of the various belief systems.

The spiritual perspectives on healing will be addressed. The critical healing components common to all beliefs will be discussed.  Additionally, important factors to consider when caring for patients from a particular faith that differ from healthcare providers will be explored. The paper concludes with a reflective summary describing ways the insights gained can be applied into practice.  

Address Several of the Worldview Questions

 A world view refers to the way of thinking about reality. It entails summing up people’s basic assumptions about meaning of life.  To determine personal worldview, one should answer the following seven questions.

  1.  What is prime reality?
  2. What is the nature of the world around us?
  3. What is a human being?
  4. What happens to a person at death?
  5. Why is it possible to know anything at all?
  6. How do we know what is right or wrong?
  7. What is the meaning of human history?

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According to my personal world view, the prime reality is that we all believe in a Supreme Being. In my case, I believe there is God, who rules the universe. According to our doctrines, the world was created in six days. We have a personal relationship to this world as man was ordered by God in the Garden of Aden to till the land and multiply, and fill the land (Genesis 1: 26). 

Therefore, Human beings were made in the image of God. In Christianity doctrines, when a believer dies, one is resting with the angels.  We believe that the soul is immortal and continues to live after death (Acts 2:29, 34).  It is possible for human beings to know anything. This is attributable to the fact that were made in the image of God, thus, he has granted this wisdom (Genesis 1: 27).   

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 I am also aware of the processes of evolution and its association with increased intelligence and consciousness.  I am a deontologist supporter. Therefore, I believe that there is nothing right or wrong in the world. These ate notions developed by socio-cultural pressures for survival.  Human history begins when one’s understand their purpose on earth. As Christians, we believe that our purpose is to serve people and to help them live in harmony (Philippians 2:1-30).

Comparative Analysis of the Different Belief Systems

 In Christianity, God is the Supreme Being and is believed to be omnipresent. Christians believe they were made in the image of God. He is the healer and comforter (Psalms 103:2-5).  Christians lacks the concept of self. They are individuals whose souls are bound, and will be redeemed by the return of Jesus Christ.  Therefore, their faith is driven by their relationship with man and God.

This is the only religion that worships the Supreme Being who loved the humanity that he gave his son, to live with them, understand their sufferings and to intercede for them. They believe in doctrines of sins, and the ultimate wage for sin if not repented is death. This is often associated with emotional insecurity especially in Christians who have had estranged lifestyles before (Hardman-Smith, 2013). 

The Christian spirituality doctrine supports repentance and forgiveness; good healing anchors that nurse could be utilized to build and strengthen the patient’s hopes once more.  Christianity also teaches on issues of kindness, love and empathy towards the suffering; e.g. the story of the Good Samaritan (Hardman-Smith, 2013).

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 On the other hand, Buddhist believes that life begun spontaneously. In Buddhist, the greatest physician is Buddha. Buddha   has skills to diagnose and administer treatment in a spiritual manner. Buddhist highly values the self-concept, which is transformed from mental and physical forces. This is an important factor during healing processes. Suffering is associated with the four noble of truths.

They believe in meditation and prayers. Buddhism critical component of spirituality in healthcare is that the community must take care of the sick. According to their teaching, he who attends the sick attends must be kind, compassionate and understanding. These are universal and important or core factors when attending patients from the different spirituality (Probst, 2014).

Spiritual Perspective on Healing

  The holistic model of healing have three spheres including mind,  body and spirit. In spiritual healing, it is the third realm (spirit) that is considered.  Healing the spirit have positive effect of the body and the mind.  This is a broad topic, but the specific  approaches to healing  includes healing liturgies, faith healing, laying of hands, anointing with oil and music meditation. 

The growing demand of spiritual healing has made the  medical community to integrate  some of the critical components of healing in their therapeutic  interventions. The most common critical components of religion in healthcare include prayer, meditation as well as patient’s belief. These are important as they influence the patient’s perception of a disease; and have been found to affect the decision making processes. Additionally, spirituality shapes the patient coping ability (Allan, 2014).

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What patients consider important when being cared for by providers with different spiritual beliefs

Receiving care from healthcare providers with different spiritual beliefs makes a patient feel uncomfortable. The healthcare providers must assess all issues that they consider   valuable during their treatment regimen. The patient’s autonomy must be respected.  Disregarding patient beliefs could lead to dissatisfaction. If the patient is not comfortable to be attended by the healthcare provider, the nurse manage must make arrangements to ensure that she gets a nurse whom they share values and beliefs (Hardman-Smith, 2013).

Creating a healing environment

Additionally, this course work has facilitated my understanding of   healing hospital as described by Laurie in Arizona Medical Centre healing hospital report.  These includes the  physical environments which are set up in a manner that they promote the  patients as  well as their relatives to cope including less noise disturbances as the patients’ needs ample rests to recuperate (Probst, 2014). Additionally, healing hospital must combine technology with the work design. 

This is because it facilitates the healthcare providers to deliver their care more efficiently. This includes activities such as assigning bank elevators to facilitate easy movement of the patients in critical conditions and the healthcare providers.  This helps in maintaining patient’s dignity as well as the preservation if the patients privacy- improving the healing process (Hardman-Smith, 2013).

 The integration of recent medical devices, healthcare informatics and nursing informatics yield efficiency and effective delivery of services. On the other hand, I have also learnt the challenges to anticipate when establishing a healing environment (Marriage, 2013). These includes staff shortages which could result to nurse burnout and lack of adequate facilities that will help give the nurses a healing environment too.

Some of the factors that might affect the concept of spirituality include scarcity of time, lack of patient knowledge and low experiences in managing spirituality discussions with the patients (Allan, 2014).  There are incidences where the patient may want to impose their faith or beliefs to the care provider. For instance, consider a patient requesting a non-religious patient to pray.

For instance; at my work place, we have very short breaks, and there lacks a mediation place. There lacks motivational factors which could be affecting out productivity. I will definitely share the insights achieved with my colleagues; there is just so much that we can learn from this unit- important concepts often overlooked by most healthcare facilities (Hardman-Smith, 2013).

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Reflective summary

 This course has improved my understanding the role of spirituality at people’s place of work.  I have always approached the concept of spirituality with a lot of uneasiness and tension; but from my interaction with the other assignment has enabled me note that my perspective of estranged relationship between healthcare and religion is not a reflective of what is expected in the field.

I have learnt that integrating spirituality in healthcare serves the best interests of the patients (Hardman-Smith, 2013).Therefore, introduction to the worldview was important as it has enable me understand how to approach patients from different cultural and religious background; such that I can now establish a fruitful interaction with the patient- promoting holistic healing process.

In the topic of the phenomenology of illness and disease, it is interesting to learn that suffering, pain as well as disease has features that are universal in human beings; and that their magnitude is influenced heavily by the person’s race, social status, gender as well as religion. By reading Lev Tolstoy book The Death of Ivan Illych, I now understand the universal elements of disease, illness as well as death.

The analysis of the Called to care text book was informative and phenomenon too. I have learnt that my perspectives about religion would influence the relationship with the patient. I have learnt not to underestimate the patients faith and the religious systems, nor should I impose my faith or believes on the patient (Probst, 2014).

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Altogether, learning this unit has enable me understand that patients especially those diagnosed with chronic diseases and are at the end of life stage have crisis of identity. In this context, spirituality must be integrated in care as it entails the search of the lost identity as well as the search of meaning. From the evidence based research, it is evident that spirituality is a coping strategy for most patients (Russell, 2013).


Therefore, every healthcare providers, especially the nurses are expected to integrate the patients culture and spirituality in the patients care plan, and when making health decisions. Additionally, the healthcare providers should not neglect their spiritual wellbeing or psychological health. Maintaining a healthy environment for nursing is important as nurse’s work in stressful environments; and is exposed to patient sufferings as well as death. This unit reminds me of the importance of staying in touch with my religion and feelings that add value as well as meaning to my life- while dedicating care to others.  


Allan, F. (2014). The Essential Guide to Religious Traditions and Spirituality for Health Care Providers Jeffers Steven , Nelson Michael , Barnet Vera et al The Essential Guide to Religious Traditions and Spirituality for Health Care Providers1048pp £120 Radcliffe 9781846195600 1846195608. Nurse Researcher, 21(6), 46-46.

Hardman-Smith, J. (2013). The Essential Guide to Religious Traditions and Spirituality for Health Care ProvidersThe Essential Guide to Religious Traditions and Spirituality for Health Care Providers. Cancer Nursing Practice, 12(3), 8-8.

Marriage, H. (2013). Book review: December 2013 The essential Guide to religious Traditions and Spirituality for Health Care Providers Stephen L Jeffers , Michael Nelson , Vern Barnet , Michael Brannigan (eds) Radcliffe Publishing , Milton Keynes pp 1048 £120 ISBN 9781846195600. J Health Visiting, 1(12), 717-717.

Probst, J. (2014). Health Care Providers In Rural America. Health Affairs, 33(2), 346-346.

Russell, P. (2013). The Essential Guide to Religious Traditions and Spirituality for Health Care ProvidersThe Essential Guide to Religious Traditions and Spirituality for Health Care Providers. Nursing Older People, 25(6), 8-8.

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The spiritual assessment tool

The spiritual assessment tool
The spiritual assessment tool

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The spiritual assessment tool

Spiritual Needs Assessment

The spiritual assessment tool is part of a holistic approach to addressing the needs of the patients. Ideally, the personal beliefs of a patient can play a vital role in incorporating coping strategies and limiting the negative implications of depression. Currently, healthcare plans implement psychosocial resources in addressing the needs of patients. Mainly, oncology patients tend to spend an extended time with the nurses and doctors; therefore, there is a need to ensure that their accommodation is as comfortable as possible (McSherry & Ross, 2010).

The spiritual assessment tool can be customized depending on attributes such as age, gender, and ethnicity. Analyzing the implications of the instrument will ultimately enable doctors and nurses to improve care management. The following questions were developed and the conversation between the interviewer and the patient documented. Furthermore, the patient was an adult male cancer patient in the late twenties, of African American ethnicity.

Part I: The Interview

Interviewer: Are there any spiritual beliefs that help you to interpret the role and meaning of life?

Patient: Yes there are. I believe that every man has a part to play in balancing earth’s ecosystem. Some people have minor roles, and others have major ones; however, each is equally important. God’s will is that people share the gifts they have with each other and with their environment.

Interviewer: Does your family have a religious background?

Patient: My father is of the Catholic faith. My mother is a Christian, a Protestant. I never really understood what she is protesting about

Interviewer: Do you have any personal religious convictions?

Patient: Yes I do. I believe the blood of Jesus can save lives and souls. Of course, I don’t mean a literal approach, but I am convinced that my life is spent well if I live reflecting on the teaching of the Bible.

Interviewer: Do you believe that aspects of your spiritual life have physical manifestations on your health?

Patient: Yes. The devil came to steal, kill and destroy. Naturally, that implies harm on my physical body. However, I can face adversity because I know I am not alone. Jesus hears my prayers and will deliver me from this affliction one way or another.

Interviewer: Are there any specific attributes about spirituality that provide an anchor in times of distress?

Patient: Christianity is about submitting to a higher purpose. God has good plans for me, therefore, if harm comes my way it is all part of God’s plan. Maybe the Lord wants to display his strength, and I just have to trust him, or my pain is somehow supposed to be a testimony for someone else who is suffering. The Lord works in mysterious ways.

Interviewer: Are there any resources from your spiritual history that you would prefer to be incorporated in your treatment plan?

Patient: Yes. Kindly notify my family to bring my Bible and study book. Also, I would prefer to connect with my local church ministry through social media, television, or radio. There is a prayer and fasting revival that is to begin next week, and I would not want to miss it despite the pain.

Interviewer: Are you concerned about any medical procedures that may assist or interfere with your spiritual convictions regarding your treatment?

Patient: Please do not give me any medicinal marijuana. I am not supposed to consume any hallucinogenic substance. Also, I would have to skip lunch starting from next week since that is when the prayer and fasting revival begins.

Part II: Analysis

The spiritual assessment tool provided crucial insight on the patient’s current mental state. Mainly, the patient’s spirituality seemed to offer effective coping strategies since there were minimal signs of depression. The patient was very cooperative and open about his spiritual preferences and how they manifest in medical perspectives. However, in future, some of the questions will be modified to prevent introducing aspects that interfere with the treatment process.

Especially, the question reflecting on the spiritual resources that can be implemented in the treatment plan tends to invoke a controversial response; therefore, it will be modified as a suggestion as opposed to the indication that the resources can indeed be incorporated despite their negative influence on health dynamics.

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 The patient answered all the questions asked. However, he appeared to have a limited attention span which may be affected by pain associated with his condition. As such, his response was very slow. Interactive communication strategies that sustain active engagement can be used in future in anticipation of challenges when the patients are required to respond (Katz, 2015). Additionally, a more open approach should be applied on a general basis since some patients may not have any spiritual affiliations. For instance, the first question can suggest to the patient that he or she has the right to refuse involvement in the conversation by incorporating terms like ‘May I ask about your religious orientation?’

The spiritual exercise facilitated a healthy interaction between the interviewer and the patient, enabling documentation of attitudes towards the current condition. Therefore, physicians and nurses can anticipate certain reactions from the patient during the treatment program. For instance, suggestions of medicinal marijuana to minimize pain and strain due to chemotherapy should not be made to ensure that the patient does not lose confidence in the treatment.

The illness had a consistent implication on the patient’s spiritual needs. The interviewee believed that Jesus would aid him in his times of need; therefore, more pain or distress required additional religious influence as an anchor. The spiritual assessment tool identifies holistic resources that should improve the patient’s experience. In scenarios whereby the interviewee does not have any religious or spiritual convictions, the physician can focus on whether the patient believes he or she has some purpose in life.

In conclusion, the spiritual assessment tool enables patients, nurses, and doctors to develop effective communication strategies. The nurses can monitor changes in behavior and offer timely intervention to prevent cases of depression (Christ, Messner & Behar, 2015). Ultimately, a patient’s psychological and social orientation should provide a support system that should be applied in the treatment strategy. Additionally, since the placebo effect proves the physiological benefits of belief, the benefits of the spiritual assessment tool should be prioritized.


Christ, G. H., Messner, C., & Behar, L. C. (2015). Handbook of oncology social work: Psychosocial care for people with cancer.

Katz, A. (2015). Meeting the need for psychosocial care in young adults with cancer.

McSherry, W., & Ross, L. (2010). Spiritual assessment in healthcare practice. Keswick, England: M & K.

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