What is spiritual care? Professional perspective on the concept of spiritual care identified group concept mapping

Niels Christian Hvidt, Kristina Tomra Nielsen, Alex Kappel Kørup, Christina Prinds, Dorte Gilså Hansen, Dorte Toudal Viftrup, Elisabeth Assing Hvidt, Elisabeth Rokkjær Hammer, Erik Falkø, Flemming Locher, Hanne Bess Boelsbjerg, Johan Albert Wallin, Karsten Flemming Thomsen, Katja Schrøder, Lene Moestrup, Ricko Damberg Nissen, Sif Stewart-Ferrer, Tobias Kvist Stripp, Vibeke Østergaard Steenfeldt, Jens SøndergaardEva Elisabet Ejlersen Wæhrens

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Objectives The overall study aim was to synthesise
understandings and experiences regarding the concept of
spiritual care (SC). More specifically, to identify, organise
and prioritise experiences with the way SC is conceived
and practised by professionals in research and the clinic.
Design Group concept mapping (GCM).
Setting The study was conducted within a university
setting in Denmark.
Participants Researchers, students and clinicians
working with SC on a daily basis in the clinic and/or
through research participated in brainstorming (n=15),
sorting (n=15), rating and validation (n=13).
Results Applying GCM, ideas were identified, organised
and prioritised online. A total of 192 unique ideas of SC
were identified and organised into six clusters. The results
were discussed and interpreted at a validation meeting.
Based on input from the validation meeting a conceptual
model was developed. The model highlights three overall
themes: (1) ‘SC as an integral but overlooked aspect of
healthcare’ containing the two clusters SC as a part of
healthcare and perceived significance; (2) ‘delivering SC’
containing the three clusters quality in attitude and action,
relationship and help and support, and finally (3) ‘the role
of spirituality’ containing a single cluster.
Conclusion Because spirituality is predominantly seen
as a fundamental aspect of each individual human being,
particularly important during suffering, SC should be an
integral aspect of healthcare, although it is challenging to
handle. SC involves paying attention to patients’ values
and beliefs, requires adequate skills and is realised in a
relationship between healthcare professional and patient
founded on trust and confidence.
TidsskriftBMJ Open
Udgave nummer10
Sider (fra-til)1-10
Antal sider11
StatusUdgivet - 28 dec. 2020


  • Sundhed, ernæring og livskvalitet