All Courses Forums Course Discussion Forums Strategic Chaplaincy Week two: Seminar Recording: Spirituality – The New Elixir in the Care Contiunu

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    • #4405

      Rose McKeown
      Member
      @rmckeown

      Week two: Seminar Recording: Spirituality – The New Elixir in the Care Contiunuum
      I went on the web and looked up Signature HealthCARE. I had never heard of it before. It is a wonderful mission and vision they have. I wish we had them here at our nursing homes!
      “Simply said, we meet people at the point of their need, with the powerful essence of unconditional love. The world says you must leave your spiritual skin at the door, but at Signature HealthCARE we made a way for one to bring it in and allow it to flourish.” The culture of love and respect permeates the whole home!
      The above reminds me of Jane Marie Thibault and her book “A Deepening Love Affair With God”: she shares there how the Nursing Home can be fertile ground for the spiritual life to grow.
      I learned much from the webcast especially the value of research and the need to speak the language of the corporate leadership. They were able to do this at Signature HealthCARE growing from a part-time chaplain to a full-time chaplain and they continue to grow. They demonstrated the importance and value of research. Through their research they were able to show the power of the spiritual in outcomes and in cost containment. The power and the efficacy of spiritual intervention. Their work benefits all of us as chaplains no matter where we are. Research is not my forte at all! The score card, in a way, was like Greek to me! It is a whole new vocabulary. I resist it but I am beginning to realize how important it is. Not just for the survival of pastoral care but for all of us as a human person. How in our essence, we are spiritual beings in a human body and the spirit needs to be attended in all our encounters. I appreciated their ending: “You Can Do It” I prayed those words to my mom as she was dying…”Mom, you can do it! You can let go. You can pass over. You can do it. Go with Jesus. Be Not Afraid. “Rose, you can do this research!”
      Appreciated how they grew from a part-time chaplain to a full-time chaplain. The part-time person had other responsibilities and could not be fully dedicated to the nursing home. I see this with the per diem chaplain that we have as he has many, many other responsibilities-family, Congregation, township. He is not able to be fully dedicated.
      I appreciated how chaplain is experienced as the patient’s advocate especially in the midst of suffering. It is in the power of what we bring: prayer, hope, bold listening-meeting people at the point of their needs, hearing what is being said beyond their words, compassion and speaking for those who cannot speak for themselves, transparency
      I would be interested to learn more about the emotional and spiritual intelligence training they have for their employees. And, how the term ‘stakeholders’ came to be.
      Thank you! Was a great learning experience for me!

    • #4410

      Joy Freeman
      Participant
      @jfreeman

      Rose,

      I too picked up on the importance of research and how they engaged the rest of the care team to help them in this area.  I think this is something we need to remember – we don’t have to go it alone.

      Joy

      • #4429

        Rose McKeown
        Member
        @rmckeown

        Thanks Joy! I do need to remember that we don’t have to go it alone….we are part of a healthcare team all working for the good of the patient.

    • #4419

      I appreciated this presentation for its use of research to accomplish goals for the department and the institution. However I struggled with some of the language that the presenters used. There was a lot of war language–chaplain army, volunteer army, bullet proof. And it counfounded me a bit that while using research, the presenters spoke with the language of piety rather than the language of research. I don’t think this approach would work in my secular institution, so I was surprised by how well it apparently worked in theirs.

      Some of the work also did not sound like language I am used to in BCC-level research. One example of this is the effort to “deconstruct suffering.” Some suffering needs to be deconstructed for sure, but some suffering is necessary and important (such as developmental suffering), at least according to Eric Cassell’s work. I was also a bit stunned by the Scriptural basis used to communicate to administration, as well as the company-wide prayer chain.

      I wanted to appreciate this presentation more. Perhaps by reading your perspectives I will see this in a different light.

    • #4420

      Joy Freeman
      Participant
      @jfreeman

      Melanie,

      I too found the language they used to be difficult to overcome.  I too work in a secular community non-profit hospital, so I to tend to think towards using the language that is used by my setting – evidenced based research. I guess one take away from this is the importance of knowing your setting and not trying to duplicate an exact replica of what worked someplace else with out considering the unique needs, language and culture of your own setting.

       

      Joy

    • #4426

      brandeaton
      Participant
      @brandeaton

      I want to echo some of the concerns with language use in the presentation–although the use of the language of piety was not troubling in itself, it was jarring when used scattered amid the language of business metrics and quantitative research.  Maybe that’s just difficult for my heart and brain to put together at one time.

      I was appreciative of the strides made through the use of research in bringing spiritual care into a for-profit long-term care provider to the degree that was accomplished.  That certainly demonstrates the benefit we can both derive and demonstrate with the use of evidence based research.

      In my own planning of a research project with our assisted living community where I am, I was helped by this presentation to think about several things that will be important for us here: (1) religious care and spiritual care and what provides the most positive impact in the lives of residents; (2) how do we measure outcomes in any study of the impact of spiritual care and is there an existing survey instrument in use in our community specific to assisted living that may be helpful to employ; (3) including to a greater degree than first anticipated the entire care team in assessing the impact of spiritual care for the whole assisted living community, both residents and associates.

    • #4430

      Rose McKeown
      Member
      @rmckeown

      Thanks Melanie, Brad and Joy. for your reflections. You all went into a deeper analysis than I did! You picked up on things that I did not. It may be because just this week we have had several nursing home patients at the hospital and they shared about their experience of living in the nursing home. It was very sad. Listening to how people are treated at Signature HealCARE was so much more loving and caring and how the nursing home can be fertile ground for the spiritual life to grow. I appreciated that spirituality was one of the three foundational Pillars.
      I didn’t like the war language or the employees being called ‘stakeholders’ either. I also wondered if at times it did not border on proselytizing.
      Brad, your research project sounds like something we could all learn from! I hope it becomes a reality and I hope there would be a way for you to share them with us!

      • #4440

        Thanks for your further thoughts about the context in which you heard these speakers, Rose. It makes sense to me that in a context where nursing homes do not value the spirit, this presentation would sound like manna from heaven!

        Brad, your research does sound very interesting. I was most taken with your point #2 about how best to structure research. Very good questions!

      • #4450

        Joy Freeman
        Participant
        @jfreeman

        Rose,

        Your reflection on how spiritually generative this setting is was a helpful re-framing.  Particularly for the elderly population who might be struggling with feeling cast aside.  Something important for me to remember even here in the inpatient hospital setting.

         

        Joy

      • #4457

        Rose McKeown
        Member
        @rmckeown

        Thanks Melanie and Joy. I worked in a nursing home for ten years and saw how we need as many hugs at the end of our life as we do at the beginning. Caring for the human spirit so important from birth ’til death. I did wonder if SignatureHealthCARE accepts Medicaid patients. Most of the patients here in our nursing homes end up on Medicaid as their money does run out. So, the institution does not have the funding to hire enough staffing. How we care for our elderly population needs to be addressed as a nation. We pay our sports people and Hollywood people lots of money to entertain us but we don’t want to pay adequately those who take care of us in a vulnerable way. I get e-mails from “Meaningful Ageing Australia” and it looks like they are way ahead of us in caring for the elderly population.

    • #4499

      David
      Participant
      @Chaplain Brinker

      Brand,  Thank you for sharing that you are planning some research.  Will there be a time when the results will be available to others?  I appreciate you thoughtful questions.  Is there a place where I can learn more about methodology in a long term care setting?

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