How do you incorporate faith into your daily nursing tasks? - page 11

by orangepink 19,322 Views | 126 Comments

The question is pretty much self-explanatory. I'm getting my BSN in a faith-based, private university with their own hospital. I've observed that there's such a huge difference between nurses who incorporate their faith into... Read More


  1. 1
    Quote from hiddencatRN
    A cultural assessment is about the patient. I also ask my patients a lot of questions about their health history and how they've been feeling without sharing my PMH with them.
    It includes religious practices, also. Think "diet".
    Not_A_Hat_Person likes this.
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    I consider myself a religious person. I will not "throw" my religion/beliefs in your face, neither will I harrass you to attend my church and I will NOT "put down" your beliefs whether they are catholic, protestant, pagan or atheistic. I Will go overboard to get you a bible, cross, rosary, or anything else you require. I will call churches, ministers, priests, etc., at your request. I will hold your hand, pray with you and just sit quietly with you as you request. I will clear the room and give you privacy for your tarot readings, your "laying on of hands", your last rites, your meditation or your crying jags.
    I will care for you, my patient, regardless of what circumstances brought you to my care. I don't need to understand why you had an abortion, did IV drugs, had unprotected sex, or drank yourself into a coma. I just need to have the knowledge to care for you in my scope of practice, and to try to meet your needs regardless of what they are.
    I think that anyone who has a belief in "something" may be as easily recognized as well as those who appear to not believe in anything. NOT to say they both don't give good care, it is sometimes the delivery of care, or the attitude of the caregiver. (Not saying this right) If I don't give a flying fig about anything, religious or not, you are gonna know it, right? If I DO care, you are gonna notice that, too, right??
    As far as my personal prayer.. I will pray for knowledge, strength and that God is guiding the hands of my Dr. for my personal care. I will pray with a pt IF they ask it. I will pray that I have the strength to NOT choke the life out of an annoying co-worker () or to not shoot my computer!!!!!
    I have family members whose religious views range from ardent baptist to Catholic to pagan to atheist. I love all my family members. I respect them and they respect my beliefs.
    So basically, how I manage my faith in my work, is to meet the needs of my pts what ever the needs may be, the best I can. I try to be the best person I can, and not give in to temptations to be not so good, and to just treat others how I like to be treated....sound familiar?
    Phoenixbyrd, cogath, kakamegamama, and 5 others like this.
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    Quote from iteachob
    It includes religious practices, also. Think "diet".
    I never said it didn't. What I said was the cultural assessment is about the patient. Incorporating faith in nursing is about the nurse.

    Asking a patient about their religious needs and preferences, if there is anything regarding their faith I need to know to make their stay more comfortable, would they like to see a chaplain or their own faith leader while in the hospital, do they have any dietary restrictions, is focusing on THEM and their needs, not me and my beliefs.

    So I don't see how a nurse who doesn't push his or her religious beliefs on a patient would necessarily have trouble with a cultural assessment.
    Horseshoe likes this.
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    There is a one word greeting that is used in many Buddhist cultures, that I find so appropriate for anyone at anytime, regardless of their beliefs. That word is "Namaste". Namaste is often used as a greeting when people meet, generally the hand are placed together and a little bow follows (think Dali Lama)--it is also a mindset and approach to other human beings that helps us to connect to each other. In a nutshell, Namaste means "the light in me honors the light in you". I think it is a beautiful way to greet another human being, as well as to approach patient/resident care.

    I am not for administering my beliefs to others--only medicine. If patients want to share their beliefs or talk, I try and take the time to listen--I suppose I try and have the view that their stay here (care facility) is all about them--it isn't about me and what I think or don't think.
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    Quote from iteachob
    I'm just wondering...for all of you who are loathe to bring up religion/religious practices with patients.....how do you properly conduct a cultural assessment? Many health practices around the world have their basis in religion.
    But that really doesn't have anything to do with the original post. The OP asks how we nurses incorporate our faith into our nursing practice. A good cultural assessment doesn't have anything to do with our own religious beliefs, it is all about finding out what the patient wants and needs regarding, among other things, religious issues/practices/desires.

    Those who have posted sentiments tantamount to being "loathe to bring up religion/religious practices with patients" have mainly been referring to being averse to bringing up their own beliefs, not being reluctant to address the patients' needs in this regard.
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    Quote from mds1
    I think that anyone who has a belief in "something" may be as easily recognized as well as those who appear to not believe in anything. NOT to say they both don't give good care, it is sometimes the delivery of care, or the attitude of the caregiver. (Not saying this right) If I don't give a flying fig about anything, religious or not, you are gonna know it, right? If I DO care, you are gonna notice that, too, right??
    This would seem to imply that an atheist would "appear to not believe in anything." Most of my patients talk to me about their beliefs, always assuming that I believe the same way. I think many of my patients would be shocked to find out I don't believe in their god, because I don't act the way many think a stereotypical atheist will act. Just because we don't believe in your god or your religion, doesn't mean we go through life not believing or caring about anything.

    It's not that I don't believe in anything. I believe that people should be treated with respect. I believe everyone has the right to their own beliefs. I believe that if each one of us will do our part to make the world a better place, even if it is just one patient at a time, we will all be much better off. I believe in doing what I can to help people in the here and now, not trying to behave a certain way to get some reward in the future. I care for people because it is the right thing to do.

    The bottom line is: there are atheists who treat patients badly, and there are "religious" people who treat patients badly. And there are atheists and "religious" people who treat people with respect and compassion. Faith has nothing to do with it. It's all about the individual.

    Funny story... I used to take care of a 95 year old woman who was a Jehovah's Witness. She once told one of the other nurses that I was "a good religious woman." She assumed I had some kind of faith because I cared for her and treated her with compassion. I wasn't going to tell her any different, because it was not about ME, it was about HER. If that thought gave her comfort, I'm not going to take it away from her.
    Last edit by metalRN on May 11, '11 : Reason: Edited to add funny story at the end. ;-)
    flyingchange, emtb2rn, and Fribblet like this.
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    be careful who you do the faith thing to! Not all people are religious. I dont get into political or religious discussion, with patients or staff. To each their own.
  8. 2
    Quote from metalRN
    I think there is no reason to incorporate YOUR faith into your job as a nurse. What matters is the patient's faith and beliefs and respecting them

    I work with a nurse who pushes her faith on everyone. She once told a patient who is a Jehovah's Witness, "God bless you." Now, from what I know of this religion, their god is Jehovah, not "God". I had one JW patient who was adamant about "it's not God, it's Jehovah!" So, whether this particular patient was offended, I can't say. But it is not that nurse's place to say that to the patient anyhow.

    If your faith helps you to be caring and kind, awesome. For me, I treat everyone with respect and a non-judgmental attitude. I don't need any kind of faith to help me do that.
    Of course there is a reason to incorporate my faith into my nursing job. My faith is not something I wear just on Sunday it is part of who I am. However, incorporating my faith into my job as a nurse NEVER means forcing my beliefs on anyone...EVER. I'm tired of people assuming that this is what it means based on interaction with a very small sample of people. I incorporate my faith by praying that God will guide my hands when I'm doing a difficult IV stick, I pray that God will grant me the grace to put aside my feelings and show mercy to the patient that has spent the entire shift referring to me a a mother------- b--ch. I can assure you if I responded out of myself it wouldn't be kind. I pray for patience when dealing with staff who JUST DON'T GET IT after explaining something to them a million times. I, by nature, am an impatient person. Not something I am proud of but it's the truth. I am a very flawed human being with strong opinions and a temper to go with them. I don't always need help being kind and caring but sometimes I do and that is what my faith is there for. It helps me when things are just too much for my human side to handle. If you don't feel the need for it...good for you but do not denigrate me by implying that the fact that you don't need it makes you somehow better. All my patients know at the end of the day is that they were cared for by someone who was willing to go the extra mile for them and that's what matters.
    kakamegamama and martinalpn like this.
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    agreed! its not the faith, but the work you put into what you do for the patient. Extra mile or other buzz words, if the patient is more comfortable..you got it.
  10. 0
    to medpro32 if this is your opinion then i am not sure why you joined in this discussion, just to bring negativity?


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