The Urgency of Spiritual Care: COVID-19 and the Critical Need for Whole-Person Palliation.
Journal of pain and symptom management
The coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) crisis has amplified the importance of palliative care to countless patients suffering with and dying from this disease, as well as to their families, communities, and the worldwide cadre of overburdened health care workers. Particularly urgent is the need for spiritual care specialists and generalists to address spiritual suffering given the degree of isolation, loneliness, and vulnerability caused by this pandemic. Although spiritual care has long been recognized as one of the domains of quality palliative care, it is often not fully integrated into practice. All disciplines are ultimately responsible for ensuring that spiritual care is prioritized to improve quality of life and the experience of patients and families facing spiritual emergencies amid the complex life-and-death scenarios inherent to coronavirus disease 2019. Although the pandemic has revealed serious fault lines in many health care domains, it has also underscored the need to recommit to spiritual care as an essential component of whole-person palliative care.
Ferrell, B., Handzo, G., Picchi, T., Puchalski, C., & Rosa, W. (2020). The Urgency of Spiritual Care: COVID-19 and the Critical Need for Whole-Person Palliation.. Journal of pain and symptom management, (). http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jpainsymman.2020.06.034