Special Issue "Selected Papers from Spirituality in Healthcare Conference 2016 “Nurturing the Spirit""

A special issue of Religions (ISSN 2077-1444).

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (30 November 2016)

Special Issue Editors

Guest Editor
Prof. Dr. Fiona Timmins

School of Nursing and Midwifery, Spirituality Interest Group, Trinity College Dublin, 24 D'Olier Street, Dublin 2, Ireland
Website | E-Mail
Phone: +35318963699
Interests: spirituality; healthcare education; professional Issues in nursing
Guest Editor
Prof. Wilf McSherry

1 Professor in Nursing, School of Health and Social Care, Staffordshire University, Blackheath Lane, Stafford, ST18 0AD, UK
2 The University Hospitals of North Midlands NHS Trust, Stoke-on-Trent and Stafford, England, UK
3 Part-time Professor at VID University College, Norway
Website | E-Mail
Phone: 44 (0) 7983981931
Interests: dignity in care, spirituality and spiritual care, ageing and dementia

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

This Special Issue will focus on a range of papers aimed at exploring the concept of spirituality in healthcare.

(1) The overall focus of the Special Issue will be to highlight presenters’ achievements at the second international conference hosted by the School of Nursing and Midwifery and Spirituality Interest Group, Trinity College Dublin in June 2016. Presenters at the conference are invited to submit papers. This will enable them to elaborate on their oral presentations and disseminate their ideas to a wider audience.

(2) The scope of the Special Issue will include narrative/discussion papers, research papers and also small-scale studies from across a range of disciplines.

(3) This issue will contribute to existent literature on spirituality in healthcare.

(4) All papers will be subject to peer review.

Prof. Dr. Fiona Timmins
Prof. Wilf McSherry
Guest Editor

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a double-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Religions is an international peer-reviewed open access monthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

References

N. Cockell, and W. Mc Sherry. “Spiritual care in nursing: an overview of published international research.” Journal of Nursing Management 20 (2012): 958–69.

J. Hall, and S. Crowther. “Spirituality and spiritual care in and around childbirth.” Women and Birth, 2015. Available online: http://eprints.bournemouth.ac.uk/21732/ (accessed on 7 Aprial 2016).

J. Hall. “Spirituality and compassion.” In The Roar Behind the Silence : Why Kindness, Compassion and Respect Matter in Maternity Care. Edited by S. Byrom and S. Downe. London: Pinter and Martin, 2015.

M. Holloway, S. Adamson, W. McSherry, J. and Swinton. Spiritual Care at the End of Life: A Systematic Review of the Literature. London, Department of Health, 2011.

H. G. Koenig. Spirituality in Patient Care: Why, How, When, and What. London: Templeton Foundation Press, 2013.

H. G. Koenig. “Commentary: Why Do Research on Spirituality and Health, and What Do the Results Mean?” Journal of Religion and Health 51(2012): 460–67.

W. McSherry. “The principal components model: a model for advancing spirituality and spiritual care within nursing and health care practice.” Journal of Clinical Nursing 15 (2006): 905–17.

W. McSherry. Making Sense of Spirituality in Nursing Practice. London: Jessica Kingsley, 2006.

W. McSherry, and S. Jamieson. “An online survey of nurses’ perceptions of spirituality and spiritual care.” Journal of Clinical Nursing 20 (2011): 1757–67.

S. Ronaldson, L. Hayes, C. Aggar, J. Green, and Carey, M. “Spirituality and spiritual caring: nurses’ perspectives and practice in palliative and acute care environments.” Journal of Clinical Nursing 21 (2012): 2126–35.

F. Timmins. “Nurse’s Views of Spirituality and Spiritual Care Provision in the Republic of Ireland.” Journal for the Study of Spirituality 3 (2013): 121–37.

F. Timmins, F. Neill, M. Q. Griffin, J. Kelly, and E. De La Cruz. “Spiritual dimensions of care: developing an educational package for hospital nurses in the republic of Ireland.” Holistic Nursing Practice 28 (2014): 106–23.

L. Van Leeuwen, J. Tiesinga, D. Post, and H. Jochemsen. “Spiritual care: implications for nurses' professional responsibility.” Journal of Clinical Nursing 15 (2006) 875–84.

R. Van Leeuwen,, L. J. Tiesinga, B. Middel, D. Post, and H. Jochemsen. “An Instrument to measure nursing Competencies in Spiritual Care: validity and reliability of the Spiritual Care Competence Scale (SCCS).” Journal of Clinical Nursing 18 (2009): 2857–69.

E. Weathers, G. McCarthy, and A. Coffey. (2015) “A Concept analysis of spirituality: an evolutionary approach.” Nursing Forum, 2015. Available online: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/25644366 (accessed on 7 Aprial 2016).

Keywords

  • spirituality
  • health
  • healthcare

Published Papers (11 papers)

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Editorial

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Open AccessEditorial Special Issue “International Conference of Spirituality in Healthcare. Nurturing the Spirit”—Trinity College Dublin 2016
Religions 2017, 8(10), 204; https://doi.org/10.3390/rel8100204
Received: 12 September 2017 / Revised: 13 September 2017 / Accepted: 13 September 2017 / Published: 26 September 2017
Cited by 1 | PDF Full-text (193 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
This is an editorial of a Special Issue regarding the International Conference of Spirituality in Healthcare held in the School of Nursing and Midwifery, Trinity College Dublin, Republic of Ireland (ROI), on June 2016 (Spirituality Research and Innovation Group 2016).[...] Full article

Research

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Open AccessFeature PaperArticle Depression and Spiritual Distress in Adult Palliative Patients: A Cross-Sectional Study
Religions 2017, 8(8), 156; https://doi.org/10.3390/rel8080156
Received: 9 June 2017 / Revised: 10 August 2017 / Accepted: 16 August 2017 / Published: 19 August 2017
Cited by 1 | PDF Full-text (919 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Palliative care patients have been associated with a high probability of having depression and spiritual distress. However, there is a gap in research about the clinical indicators that can promote an effective differential diagnosis of depression and spiritual distress. This study aimed to [...] Read more.
Palliative care patients have been associated with a high probability of having depression and spiritual distress. However, there is a gap in research about the clinical indicators that can promote an effective differential diagnosis of depression and spiritual distress. This study aimed to identify the prevalence and the clinical indicators of depression and spiritual distress in palliative patients in primary care. An observational and cross-sectional study was conducted in 2016 in a Portuguese primary care unit. From a General Practitioners patients’ file of 1457 adult patients, a sample of 30 palliative patients was recruited throughout two steps: (1) selection of patients with chronic disease criteria; (2) selection of patients with Prognostic Indicator Guidance criteria. Exclusion criteria included cognitive impairment and psychotic disorders. Participants completed the self-assessment Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scale (HADS) and Functional Assessment of Chronic Illness Therapy—Spiritual Well-Being Scale (FACIT-Sp12) scales, which were sealed in opaque envelopes. Clinical data collection used semi-structured interviews for the diagnosis of depression and spiritual distress. The prevalence of depression was 23% (n = 7), while the prevalence of spiritual distress was 23% (n = 7). Four patients (13%) fulfilled both the depression and the spiritual distress criteria. Depression and spiritual distress seem to be both linked to the spiritual dimensions of the human being, but seem to differ in the dimensions of suffering and pharmacologic treatment. Full article
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Open AccessArticle New Zealand Nurses’ Perceptions of Spirituality and Spiritual care: Qualitative Findings from a National Survey
Religions 2017, 8(5), 79; https://doi.org/10.3390/rel8050079
Received: 17 March 2017 / Revised: 9 April 2017 / Accepted: 19 April 2017 / Published: 26 April 2017
Cited by 2 | PDF Full-text (493 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
This paper presents the qualitative findings from the first national survey of New Zealand nurses’ views on spirituality and spiritual care. The importance of spirituality as a core aspect of holistic nursing care is gaining momentum. Little is currently known about New Zealand [...] Read more.
This paper presents the qualitative findings from the first national survey of New Zealand nurses’ views on spirituality and spiritual care. The importance of spirituality as a core aspect of holistic nursing care is gaining momentum. Little is currently known about New Zealand nurses’ understandings, perceptions and experience of spirituality. Design: A descriptive online survey. Method: A random sample of 2000 individuals resident in New Zealand whose occupation on the New Zealand electoral roll suggested nursing was their current or past occupation were invited via postcard to participate in an online survey. This paper reports on the free response section of the survey. Findings: Overall, 472 invitees responded (24.1%). From the respondents, 63% completed at least one of the optional free response sections. Thematic analysis generated three metathemes: ‘The role of spirituality in nursing practice’, ‘Enabling best practice’, and ‘Creating a supportive culture’. Conclusions: Spirituality was predominantly valued as a core aspect of holistic nursing care. However, clarity is needed surrounding what constitutes spiritual care and how this intersects with professional responsibilities and boundaries. Participants’ insights suggest a focus on improving the consistency and quality of spiritual care by fostering inter-professional collaboration, and improved provision of resources and educational opportunities. Full article
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Open AccessArticle The Spiritual Journey of Infertile Couples: Discussing the Opportunity for Spiritual Care
Religions 2017, 8(4), 76; https://doi.org/10.3390/rel8040076
Received: 30 November 2016 / Revised: 11 April 2017 / Accepted: 20 April 2017 / Published: 24 April 2017
Cited by 5 | PDF Full-text (282 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Infertility is a worldwide public health issue that exerts an in-depth impact on couples, families, communities and the individual. This reproductive health condition, along with fertility treatments, often forces couples to question their purpose and meaning in life, and to begin a spiritual [...] Read more.
Infertility is a worldwide public health issue that exerts an in-depth impact on couples, families, communities and the individual. This reproductive health condition, along with fertility treatments, often forces couples to question their purpose and meaning in life, and to begin a spiritual journey. Nursing and midwifery literature describes the care of those living with infertility, but often lacks a clear approach of the spiritual dimension, and diagnosis and interventions may not be effectively addressed. In this paper, we present a discussion about spirituality and the assessment of spiritual needs such as hope, beliefs, meaning and satisfaction in life. In addition, spiritual needs are defined, for both nurses and midwives, and spiritual interventions are proposed for promoting couples’ resilience and spiritual well-being. Spirituality should be considered from the beginning to the end of life. It is necessary to translate this into the development and implementation of both specific policies regarding a spiritual approach and advanced education and training programs for nurses and midwives who care for infertile couples. Full article
Open AccessFeature PaperArticle A Feasibility Study of Taste & See: A Church Based Programme to Develop a Healthy Relationship with Food
Religions 2017, 8(2), 29; https://doi.org/10.3390/rel8020029
Received: 20 October 2016 / Revised: 15 February 2017 / Accepted: 16 February 2017 / Published: 18 February 2017
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Abstract
Holistic approaches which include a religious element are a promising intervention within obesity, but have not been explored in the UK. Objective: To conduct a feasibility study of a three-month, Christian-based intuitive-eating programme in a church. Methods: A total of 18 [...] Read more.
Holistic approaches which include a religious element are a promising intervention within obesity, but have not been explored in the UK. Objective: To conduct a feasibility study of a three-month, Christian-based intuitive-eating programme in a church. Methods: A total of 18 adults participated. Ethical approval was granted by Coventry University Ethics Committee. Participant and facilitator experience was investigated qualitatively. Results showed participants accepted the programme and engaged well with its spiritual component. Lay facilitators managed to adequately run the programme, although some difficulties identified training needs. Clinical, psychological and spiritual measures were analysed using intention to treat; baseline observation carried forward to input missing data. Mental well-being, anxiety, depression, quality of life, pain/discomfort uncontrolled-eating, emotional-eating, cognitive-restrained-eating, intuitive-eating and Body Mass Index (BMI) improved significantly post-intervention. There were improvements in spiritual well-being, and reductions in energy, fat and saturated fat intake. Between the end of the intervention and a six-month follow-up, there were no statistically significant changes. However, the extent that weight and BMI returned to baseline levels meant that the reduction from baseline was no longer significant or clinically important. Mean changes in other variables, including uncontrolled eating, emotional eating, mental well-being and anxiety remained statistically improved from baseline. At six-month follow-up, improvements in intuitive eating were fully sustained at this time point and total fat, saturated fat and sugar intake had reduced further even though these values did not reach statistical significance. Conclusion: It is feasible to recruit to, deliver and evaluate Taste & See in a UK church, with lay volunteers. Clinical outcomes were positive, but a larger, controlled study is needed. Full article
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Open AccessFeature PaperArticle Searching for the Hidden: A Phenomenological Study Exploring the Spiritual Aspects of Day Case Surgery from Staff Perspectives
Religions 2017, 8(1), 15; https://doi.org/10.3390/rel8010015
Received: 20 September 2016 / Revised: 8 December 2016 / Accepted: 5 January 2017 / Published: 19 January 2017
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Abstract
Recent healthcare literature has shown an increasing interest in spiritual care and the way in which it supports patients as they deal with illness; but; as the body of evidence grows in many areas; the spiritual aspects of day surgery have been under-researched. [...] Read more.
Recent healthcare literature has shown an increasing interest in spiritual care and the way in which it supports patients as they deal with illness; but; as the body of evidence grows in many areas; the spiritual aspects of day surgery have been under-researched. The aims of this interpretive phenomenological study were to identify the patients’ spiritual needs and concerns prior to surgery both from the patients’ and surgical healthcare staffs’ perspectives and to investigate whether there was congruence between the groups. The results of the staff focus groups are presented here. A purposive; convenience sample of 13 staff (nurses; consultants and pharmacists) attended one of three focus groups. Data were analysed utilising interpretive phenomenological analysis in order to discover the meaning for participants derived from their own contexts. Caring for spiritual and existential concerns was expressed through staff’s relationships with patients; by a caring attitude and connection with them; helping patients to cope. Results show that spiritual care can be embedded in day surgery practice; and can be given during fleeting care episodes; though awareness is needed of the way in which this can be achieved. Full article
Open AccessFeature PaperArticle Prayer and Religion—Irish Nurses Caring for an Intellectually Disabled Child Who Has Died
Religions 2016, 7(12), 148; https://doi.org/10.3390/rel7120148
Received: 30 November 2016 / Revised: 30 November 2016 / Accepted: 10 December 2016 / Published: 15 December 2016
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Abstract
This research paper was presented at the Second International Spirituality in Healthcare Conference 2016—Nurturing the Spirit held at Trinity College Dublin, The University of Dublin. 23rd June 2016. Historically, nursing has had a sound “spiritual” grounding. However, some contemporary health literature is questioning [...] Read more.
This research paper was presented at the Second International Spirituality in Healthcare Conference 2016—Nurturing the Spirit held at Trinity College Dublin, The University of Dublin. 23rd June 2016. Historically, nursing has had a sound “spiritual” grounding. However, some contemporary health literature is questioning spirituality’s relevance, and practitioners often shy away from it. This article aims to highlight the findings of a study which, in exploring the nurse’s personal grief relating to caring for a child with an intellectual disability who has died, identified the practice and value of spirituality in nursing practice. A qualitative descriptive research approach was employed. Semi-structured interviews were undertaken with eight female nurses who had cared for a child with an intellectual disability who has died. Data was analyzed using Newell and Burnard’s pragmatic approach to qualitative data. Ethical Approval was granted by University of Dublin, Trinity College and the relevant healthcare provider. Eight broad themes emerged from the study. “Prayer and Religion” was a sub-theme of “Focusing on the positive”, which is the main focus of this article, and discussed in depth for the first time. Spirituality and religion plays a key role in the daily lives of many nurses, who further embrace this aspect of their lives when managing dying, death and bereavement. It became evident that spirituality was not merely a reactive strategy, but one underpinning a participant’s core nursing values. Nurse Managers and colleagues should continue to acknowledge, respect and support staff’s spirituality. Full article

Other

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Open AccessFeature PaperConference Report Spirituality in the Healthcare Workplace
Religions 2017, 8(12), 260; https://doi.org/10.3390/rel8120260
Received: 23 June 2017 / Revised: 5 October 2017 / Accepted: 30 October 2017 / Published: 28 November 2017
Cited by 6 | PDF Full-text (190 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Spirituality involves a sense of connectedness, meaning making and transcendence. There is abundant published research that focuses on the importance of spirituality to patients and their families during times of illness and distress. However over the last decade there has also been a [...] Read more.
Spirituality involves a sense of connectedness, meaning making and transcendence. There is abundant published research that focuses on the importance of spirituality to patients and their families during times of illness and distress. However over the last decade there has also been a growing awareness about the importance of considering the need to address peoples’ spiritual needs in the workplace. Engaging in ones own personal spirituality involves connecting with the inner self, becoming more self aware of ones humanity and limitations. Engaging with ones personal spirituality can also mean that people begin to greater find meaning and purpose in life and at work. This may be demonstrated in the workplace by collegial relationships and teamwork. Those who engage with their own spirituality also engage more easily with others through a connectedness with other staff and by aligning their values with the respective organization if they fit well with ones personal values. Workplace spirituality is oriented towards self-awareness of an inner life which gives meaning, purpose and nourishment to the employees’ dynamic relationships at the workplace and is eventually also nourished by meaningful work. Exercising ones personal spirituality contributes towards generating workplace spirituality. Essentially acting from ones own personal spirituality framework by being in doing can contribute towards a person becoming a healing and therapeutic presence for others, that is nourishing in many workplaces. Personal spirituality in healthcare can be enhanced by: reflection in and on action; role-modeling; taking initiative for active presence in care; committing oneself to the spiritual dimension of care; and, integrating spirituality in health caregivers’ education. As spirituality is recognized as becoming increasingly important for patients in healthcare, increasing educational opportunities are now becoming available for nurses internationally that could support personal and workplace spirituality. Full article
Open AccessConference Report Art Images in Holistic Nursing Education
Religions 2017, 8(6), 103; https://doi.org/10.3390/rel8060103
Received: 30 November 2016 / Revised: 8 May 2017 / Accepted: 22 May 2017 / Published: 25 May 2017
Cited by 2 | PDF Full-text (558 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Background: Nursing research has concentrated on empirical knowing with little focus on aesthetic knowing. Evidence from the literature suggests that using visual art in nursing education enhances both clinical observation skills and interpersonal skills. The purpose of this review was to explore how [...] Read more.
Background: Nursing research has concentrated on empirical knowing with little focus on aesthetic knowing. Evidence from the literature suggests that using visual art in nursing education enhances both clinical observation skills and interpersonal skills. The purpose of this review was to explore how visual art has been used in baccalaureate nursing education. Methods: Of 712 records, 13 studies met the criteria of art, nursing and education among baccalaureate nursing students published in English. Results: Three quantitative studies demonstrated statistical significance between nursing students who participated in arts-based learning compared to nursing students who received traditional learning. Findings included improved recall, increased critical thinking and enhanced emotional investment. Themes identified in 10 qualitative studies included spirituality as role enhancement, empathy, and creativity. Conclusion: Visual arts-based learning in pre-licensure curriculum complements traditional content. It supports spirituality as role enhancement in nurse training. Visual art has been successfully used to enhance both critical thinking and interpersonal relations. Nursing students may experience a greater intra-connectedness that results in better inter-connectedness with patients and colleagues. Incorporating visual arts into pre-licensure curriculums is necessary to nurture holistic nursing practice. Full article
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Open AccessConference Report Spiritual Vulnerability, Spiritual Risk and Spiritual Safety—In Answer to a Question: ‘Why Is Spirituality Important within Health and Social Care?’ at the ‘Second International Spirituality in Healthcare Conference 2016—Nurturing the Spirit.’ Trinity College Dublin, The University of Dublin
Religions 2017, 8(3), 38; https://doi.org/10.3390/rel8030038
Received: 30 November 2016 / Revised: 13 February 2017 / Accepted: 9 March 2017 / Published: 11 March 2017
Cited by 2 | PDF Full-text (165 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
In offering an answer to the question, ‘Why is spirituality important within health and social care?’ this paper articulates views on the concepts ‘Spiritual Vulnerability,’ ‘Spiritual Risk’ and ‘Spiritual Safety’ and argues for the centrality of spirituality within holistic, person-centred professional health and [...] Read more.
In offering an answer to the question, ‘Why is spirituality important within health and social care?’ this paper articulates views on the concepts ‘Spiritual Vulnerability,’ ‘Spiritual Risk’ and ‘Spiritual Safety’ and argues for the centrality of spirituality within holistic, person-centred professional health and social care. It proceeds to offer a definition of Spiritual Safety and then goes on to highlight how the patient being and feeling spiritually safe and how professional carers enabling spiritual safety can reduce spiritual vulnerability and spiritual risk; and may be seen as essential aspects of professional holistic care. Full article
Open AccessConference Report Hidden Suffering and the Effects of Adverse Childhood Experiences
Religions 2017, 8(3), 31; https://doi.org/10.3390/rel8030031
Received: 29 November 2016 / Revised: 1 February 2017 / Accepted: 15 February 2017 / Published: 23 February 2017
Cited by 1 | PDF Full-text (168 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
To understand suffering is to understand what it means to be human. Suffering focuses our attention on our vulnerability, which we would rather ignore or deny. As health care professionals (HCP) we need to be able to listen, to attune and be empathic [...] Read more.
To understand suffering is to understand what it means to be human. Suffering focuses our attention on our vulnerability, which we would rather ignore or deny. As health care professionals (HCP) we need to be able to listen, to attune and be empathic to the suffering patient. If we act as an “enlightened witness” we provide a safe place for a suffering patient to grieve their loss and be vulnerable. This is skilled and demanding work, it is also important to tend to our own needs through a practice of self-care and reflection to prevent burn-out and compassion fatigue. The topic of adverse childhood experiences (ACE), which are common in the general population, are addressed in the second part of this paper. Their effects are profound, and increase with the degree of maltreatment. The maltreatment and suffering of these children usually remains hidden into adulthood beneath years of shame and denial. One aspect of our job in health care is to help patients acknowledge, experience, and bear the reality of life with all its pleasures and heartache. In order to do this well, we need to keep in touch with our own humanity, but also continue to take care of ourselves. Full article
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