Understanding the Role of The Hospice Chaplain

Understanding the Role of The Hospice Chaplain

The St. Bernardine’s Hospice team is comprised of many people to help our patients. One of the people you might meet is the Chaplain. This individual works with the bereavement team to help those facing end-of-life issues.

The patient’s faith journey is essential to us and is part of the federal requirements for hospice. Some of our patients haven’t engaged in spiritual beliefs or religion. There’s no pressure for you to have these services, but you should know that they’re there if you so desire.

Plans of Care

At St. Bernardine’s, our Chaplain will listen to you without judgment. They understand you’re afraid and have feelings of uneasiness about the upcoming days, and they can provide spiritual help. Your care plan includes spiritual services, and this plan is designed with your individual needs in mind. The Chaplain can pray, read scripture, or do other acts that can boost your faith and bring peace.

Trained Medical-Spiritual Professional

Many people don’t realize that our Chaplain is a trained employee. Not only will they help the family and patient as they walk this difficult journey, but they can give insight into the specific illness. The biggest struggle outside of health battles is the emotional turmoil that comes from hospice. A Chaplain helps family and the patient’s needs, including things like:

  • Anger
  • Anticipatory grief
  • Depression
  • Anxiety
  • Perceived loss

Since the Chaplain is a part of a highly trained team, they work with the nurses and doctors to provide comprehensive care to the patient. They can also prompt for changes to be made based on their observations or requests made by the patient and caregivers.

We believe that a healthy spiritual outlook helps our patients at St. Bernardine’s Hospice with their overall sense of well-being. It can significantly improve pain management and give them greater physical comfort. We have many goals for our patients, but one of the most important is comfort.

Supports People of All Faiths

Some folks think that just because they’re not religious or have a different faith than that of St. Bernardine’s, they can’t utilize the bereavement spiritual care and Chaplain’s services. We help people from all walks of life with various beliefs. The objective is to give support to folks in need, and you don’t need a specific religion or belief to be kind.