Why the Delivery of Religious and Spiritual Support to People of Any Faith and None is Important
Keywords:6 C’s, EoL, Francis Report, chaplaincy, death, dying, health and wellbeing, liminality, NHS, patient focus, religion and spirituality, rites of passage, rituals
The aim of the research was to observe and scrutinize how chaplains go about facilitating a sacred space, when requested, in the last days and hours of life. The research sought to identify the context in which chaplains are compelled to facilitate religious and spiritual rituals and what perspectives participants have of chaplains when creating a sacred space within non-orthodox, clinical spaces; how and why it is important for chaplains to deliver religious and spiritual support. It also sought to understand the added value of chaplaincy in relation to high quality patient care in relation to the 6 C’s born out of the Francis Report. The research used a cross sectional design study with purposive sampling and carried out ten one-to-one interviews with hospital staff who had experienced chaplaincy. They were selected from different areas of the hospital. Using a thematic analysis process to identify emerging themes, the research was able to achieve an in-depth understanding of the contributions made by chaplains to patient and family experience at the point of dying and death. As well as the data acquired from the interviews, the research was also able to use the participant observations of the researcher, who is a chaplain. The research produced good data, generating diverse and different insights. The conclusion was that death is perceived as a significant rite of passage which requires marking, subject to a variety of expectations, and that those best placed to deliver this service are chaplains, who are perceived as practitioners in this eld. An attempt has been made, in the conclusions and recommendations, to align the gifts and experience of chaplaincy to demonstrate that they consistently deliver against the recommendations for the 6C’s framework.
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