Spiritual Care and Why It’s Important in Hospice Care

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When we talk about patient care, many think that it only covers physical and medical care. Although it’s important to have conversations about the mind and body, spirituality is also important. 

In essence, the spirit is neither the mind nor body—it’s the force that shapes and influences a person’s life and actions. Spirituality encourages us to ask tough questions to ourselves and empowers us to seek meaning and to search for purpose in our lives. 

Home care services that focus on a patient’s mental and physical well-being are great, but if you want to improve the quality of life of our loved ones, it’s ideal for integrating spirituality into their every day care. 

What is Spirituality? 

Whether you’re aware or not, everyone will have spiritual needs. For some, their faith and spirituality are intertwined, whether it’s a belief in Buddha, God, or something greater than themselves. For other people, spirituality could be a healthful relationship with nature, a connection with music, or a deeper understanding of themselves. 

Although spirituality can be a vast concept, in essence, it’s pretty much about seeking purpose and meaning in life, feeling a sense of belonging and a connection to oneself or a higher being.

What is Spiritual Care? 

Some elderly care providers such as hospice providers, can offer spiritual care as part of their program. This encourages individuals to be more mindful about their aging, providing them with meaningful support to be the best version of themselves despite the circumstances. 

Below are five areas of spiritual care:

  • Organizational Leadership and Alignment: This allows spiritual care at all levels throughout the organization;
  • Relationship and Connectedness: This provides spiritual care focusing on mutual, genuine, and respectful relationships;
  • Identifying and Meeting Spiritual Needs: Recognizes the preferences and needs of people, as well as identification and documentation of this information to share with the care team;
  • Ethical Context of Spiritual Care: To offer spiritual care that respects and upholds the right of elderly people;
  • Enabling Spiritual Expression: Interventions and individualized activities that encourage older people to find meaning, connectedness, purpose, and hope.

When you incorporate spiritual care in senior care, you can reduce the stress of your elderly loved one facing death, providing them with an opportunity to explore the meaning of their lives and carry out their final days with dignity and courage.

How Do We Incorporate Spiritual Care in Hospice? 

The spiritual needs of every individual will be different. Because of this, caregivers need to understand how they can support someone spiritually just as they would physically and mentally.

  • Help the elderly find ways to connect through different encounters, stories, and memories;
  • Caregivers should respect the person’s identity, diversity, and culture, encouraging the patient to be themselves and express themselves authentically.
  • Encourage engagement through purposeful activities;
  • Empower our elders to connect with nature and to seek quiet in outdoor areas and natural spaces;
  • Facilitate prayer or meditation by providing specific religious activities or services that fit the needs of the senior.

The Bottom Line: Speak to Your Hospice Agency About Spiritual Care 

Spiritual care needs the same attention as mental and physical care. Because of this, we encourage you to speak to your hospice agency to help incorporate spiritual care into your loved one’s services. This way, you encourage your loved ones to try to come to terms with their situation and walk through the final moments of their lives with courage and hope. 

How Can We Help You? 

Transitioning can be difficult for many older patients. Because of this, it’s only right that you provide sufficient mental, physical, and spiritual support. 

Thankfully, the chaplains, nurses, and aides at Bridge Home Health & Hospice are committed to providing patients with the highest home-based patient care. If you’re looking for home health and hospice care in San Diego and other locations, we’re who you need.

Are you looking for elderly care in California? Request for more information and learn more about our services today!