Spiritual Needs Assessment and Reflection

Spiritual Needs Assessment and Reflection

Part 1: Interview.

  1. a) What things do give importance in your life and believe in?

“I believe in the almighty God. I consider him as my personal savior in any situation that can arise before me”.

  1. b) In what ways have your beliefs and faith influenced the behavior throughout the entire period of your illness?

“Believing in God has made me to be firm and hopeful that I will get well. I have always prayed that one day God will heal me and I will get off the ailment and live a normal life while continuing to serve God”.

  1. c) Are there people or any person that is important to your life or your love greatly?

“I love my family members very much, and I miss them very much during this my hospital stay. They have always been caring for me trying to see me happy despite the worsening illness. In addition to that, I am a member of the church choir in our church that also possess some attachment that I continuously long for during this moment”.

  1. d) In what ways would you like me as your healthcare provider to address these issues in your healthcare?

“I am feeling so weak and think that I may not make it. I also feel that you have done your best and you can’t do any more to address the situation at hand. Do you think that you can do something to make me well? I doubt if I need anything from you. Meanwhile, you can contact my pastor to come and visit me and offer a prayer service to me as well. I think I don’t need any more questions from you for now”.

Part 2: Analysis.

The above interview aimed at assessing the spiritual needs of a patient that have nursed for over six months in a nursing home being in palliative care unit after being diagnosed with cancer of the liver in stage IV. The patient is a black female American, 21 years of age who is a Christian believer under the Roman Catholic denomination.

What went well?

In the interview, various things went on well. By the fact that the patient agreed to be engaged in the assessment and getting committed to the questions was a good move right from the start. She was keen in listening to me and answering my questions with no objection at the beginning of the session. Beside these, I was also able to do empathetic listening, documenting the religious preferences of the patient to guide future visits and finally incorporating the precept of the patient’s faith traditions into the treatment plans. I also felt that through the interview, we enhanced the healthcare provider and user relationship. Even, the interview also went on well because it seemed to mean a lot to the patient and this showed her belief in Christianity. Moreover, spiritual assessments are not just done to determine the needs but to act as a healing process in the ailment (Saguil and Phelps, 2012).

Barriers that impaired the interview.

I was caught with time constraints that even made the patient decline further probing. It is essential to make the patient aware of the number of questions that he or she will answer (Hodge, 2013). Furthermore, it was challenging to ask such personal questions concerning faith and beliefs as the patient was not always comfortable in talking about the issues raised.

Addressing challenges as well as changes needed.

For the future interviews, I would work on the various resources that I have to be knowledgeable enough in religious matters (Hodge, 2013). This will make me comfortable in interviewing the clients since I would have gone through what various people feel about the personal questions concerning the faith. I will also allocate enough time to prevent time constraint so that the interviewee can have sufficient time to do the explanation. At the same time, I will inform the patient of the number of questions and the amount of time that we would likely take in the interview.

Tool aiding interventions towards needs of the patient.

The tool was able to determine the impact the disease has on the patient’s spiritual status. This has enabled me to get to know the great belief that the patient has hence can report to the chaplain or her pastor to provide spiritual support. I can also ask her choir members to visit her as identified by the tool to be support system she can look up to.

Impact of Illness and stress on spiritual concerns.

It dawned on me that stress and condition were able to create an exaggeration of the spiritual concern. This made the patient turn emotional and start tearing while explaining her membership in the church choir. The amplification was also evident when the patient felt that her help would only originate from God and the healthcare provider was not in any position to assist the situation at hand.


Healthcare givers need to be trained on the use of various tools to do the spiritual assessment of their clients. The tool will enable the provider get the faith the patient stands for, its importance, the support system the patient has and the role he or she can lay in addressing the patients’ needs. The assessment enables improvement of the quality of care that the patient is given since the holistic approach to care is taken into account.





Austin, P., Macleod, R., Siddall, P., McSherry, W., & Egan, R. (2017). Spiritual care training is

needed for clinical and non-clinical staff to manage patients’ spiritual needs. Journal for

the Study of Spirituality, 7(1), 50-63.

Best, M., Butow, P., & Olver, I. (2014). Spiritual support of cancer patients and the role of the

doctor. Supportive Care in Cancer, 22(5), 1333-1339.

Hodge, D. R. (2013). Implicit spiritual assessment: An alternative approach for assessing client

spirituality. Social work, 58(3), 223-230.

Saguil, A., & Phelps, K. (2012). The Spiritual Assessment. Aafp.org. Retrieved 20 October

2017, from http://www.aafp.org/afp/2012/0915/p546.html

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