Religious/spiritual referrals in hospice and palliative care

Pentaris, Panagiotis and Tripathi, Khyati. 2020. Religious/spiritual referrals in hospice and palliative care. Religions, 11(10), 496. ISSN 2077-1444 [Article]

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Abstract or Description

This study examines the religious/spiritual referral patterns in hospice and palliative care. Religion and death are two highly intersected topics and albeit often discussed together in hospice and palliative care, little is known about how professionals respond to religious/spiritual needs of patients/families/friends and in relation to the chaplaincy team. By means of an in-depth interviewing method, this paper reports on data from 15 hospice and palliative care professionals. Participants were recruited from across five hospice and palliative care organisations, and the data was managed and analysed with the use of NVivo. Largely, participants were keen to refer patients/families/friends to the chaplaincy team, unless the former?s faith or lack thereof did not match the chaplains, in which case referrals to a religious leader in the community were favoured. This shed light to the tendencies to homogenise religious/spiritual beliefs. The paper concludes with some implications for practice and research.

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© 2020 by the authors. Licensee MDPI, Basel, Switzerland. This article is an open access article distributed under the terms and conditions of the Creative Commons Attribution (CC BY) license (


religion; spirituality; hospice care; palliative care; spiritual care

Departments, Centres and Research Units:

Social, Therapeutic & Community Engagement (STaCS)
Social, Therapeutic & Community Engagement (STaCS) > Faiths and Civil Society
Social, Therapeutic & Community Engagement (STaCS) > Social Work


27 September 2020Accepted
29 September 2020Published

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Date Deposited:

10 Oct 2022 09:44

Last Modified:

10 Oct 2022 09:44

Peer Reviewed:

Yes, this version has been peer-reviewed.


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