Spiritual needs and spiritual support preferences of people with end stage heart failure and their carers

Linda Ross, Jacky Austin

Research output: Book/ReportCommissioned reportpeer-review


Background and rationale

Advanced heart failure is a complex syndrome and dying from this heart condition can be a lengthy and inherently difficult process. It often involves severe exhaustion and prolonged uncertainty for both patients and carers (Lehman 2006). During this illness trajectory it is important that patients’ spiritual and psychosocial needs, as well as the physical should receive attention (Basta 2004). For patients with heart failure spiritual issues are inextricably linked with all other problems (Murray et al 2004). Over the past decade there has been an increasing interest in spirituality and health as evidenced by the increase in literature (e.g. Aldridge 2000, Gilbert 2011, Koenig et al 2001, McSherry and Ross 2010, Narayanasamy 2006), research, conferences and study days. Spiritual care is now an important part of health care as reflected in: the Human Rights Act; official policies of bodies such as the World Health Organisation and, in the UK, government health policy documents (in excess of 5 currently); the development of spiritual care departments and the employment of chaplains within hospitals; the expectation within professional codes of ethics and education guidelines that healthcare professionals, such as nurses, will deliver spiritual care as part of holistic care.
Original languageEnglish
PublisherUnknown Publisher
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jul 2011


  • spiritual needs
  • end stage heart failure


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