What are your views?

Should the NHS pay for them? Should they be trained?
Why are people sent to them when they have no counselling / therapy training?

What would you do if confronted by one?

We are taught in nursing and healthcare to treat the person holistically- does this include their so-called 'spiritual' needs?

come on- lets discuss this stuff :)

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Replies to This Discussion

I do not think they should be paid at all. I don't know how you train a priest for anything but maybe grief counseling.

If I were ill and in the hospital or had lost a loved one I would just have to say what I say when any preacher comes to pray for me..."I'm not who you are looking for, I'm not lost. Please, not another word. Bye"

If a patient requests prayer, call in their preacher, nurses and doctors have enough to worry about while taking care of the body. Bedside manner is very important, but spiritual support is not the realm of a medical caretaker. I love that they touch on that issue on the tv show 'House'
I have no problem with someone seeing the priest / pastor / 'witch' doctor of their choice if that is what they find to be of confort at their time of need. What I object to is the use of NHS money to fund the chaplains- and the assumption that I often find in hospitals and other healthcare facilities - that these chaplains know what they are doing when it comes to counselling.
In most hospitals I have worked in yes they do not fish for converts, but in some they do.
It sounds like you were valued for your personal skills more than anything else :)
Trouble is, when a chaplain is called you cannot guarantee they have similar skills- when you call a nurse or a doctor or a counsellor you can generally be assured they have a skill set that is useful and obvious. I am a psychiatric nurse by profession and tend to be caled on to provide the sort of thing you mention above- and am trained to do so.
Let me rephrase that they shouldn't be paid at all. It is still a service of the hospital...that sounded bad. I was referring to payment by state funding...which if you have a national health service, that would be state funding...arrrgh, I'm contradicting myself.
interesting snippet on the NSS website here
I'm embarrased to say that I don't know if the chaplins in the hospital I worked in were paid or not. I suppose I always assumed they were all volunteers. There was certainly no lack of people to pray over the sick and dying whether the chaplin was there or not. Most of the nurses and even some of the doctors were not shy about praying with a family or patient. I got very adept at offering comfort and condolenscences without actuallly participating in prayer. I never hesitated offering to call the chaplin if the family or patient wanted this service. Since we have no NHS here, it's a bit of a moot point, but I can see where you, Pam, would object to this service being paid for by this route. And as for training......just don't get me started. Anybody who can wail to jeeebus seems deemed qualified in this state.
hi Cassie- yes the difference is that we have a stae funded service here with very limited funds - some of which in my view are wasted on chaplains- if the hospital is private or funded by a religious group then of course there is nothing wrong with it and the patients know what they are letting themselves in for - over here the first port of call is always stae NHS unless oyu already have private healthcare or are very very rich.
as for being asked to pray- it has never happened to me- we don't see it so much over here- but I would have to poilitely excuse myself from the room and if they actualy asked me to do it I would have to refuse- after all- these people think they can refuse people abortions or the morning after pill wehy should I not refuse to pray? but then I am a psychiatric nurse and I work with kids- so not much praying needed lol - although I do have a few very religious families on my caseload the issue has never arisen as I don't talk about it
Hospital Chaplains are a necessary evil. patients who “believe” should have a resource for that belief in critical times. What I object to is these well meaning morons coming into patients rooms unannounced (when patients don’t put down a religious preference on their admitting form) and doing their shtick. It happened to me during a hospitalization when I failed to put down a preference. The next time I was admitted, I put down Atheist and wasn’t bothered :-).
No body should PAY for them. They choose to do this as a community service. They get their tithing/salary at their churches.




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