End-of-Life Issues: Spirituality
There is an increasing emphasis in medicine for healthcare providers to treat the whole patient. Whole patient care includes the physical, psychosocial and spiritual care of the patient. Contemporary medicine has focused on the physical illnesses of the patient, creating a large armamentarium of tools to combat disease processes. In addition, addressing the spiritual needs of critically ill patients is an important part of intensive care, particularly when the patients are dying in the hospital. This chapter will describe some differences between spirituality and religiosity, suggest some self-education tactics for physicians interested in expanding their understanding of spirituality and discuss approaches to some common requests of a spiritual nature in the intensive care unit (ICU).
KeywordsEnd-of-Life Spirituality Religion Ethics Prayer
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