Advancing Spiritual Care Through Research

New article on shadowing experiences now available

From Journal of Health Care Chaplaincy:

Casey Clevenger, Karen Pugliese, Sean O’Mahony, Stacie Levine & George Fitchett. “Study of Shadowing Experiences among Chaplains in the Coleman Palliative Medicine Fellowship.”

Abstract: While shadowing is a relatively common practice in the education of many health professionals, it is not widely used in chaplaincy education. Findings from our qualitative study of 12 chaplains who participated in the Coleman Palliative Medicine Training Program suggest it may offer benefits for practicing chaplains. In interviews with seven fellows who shadowed more experienced palliative care (PC) chaplains and the five mentors who were shadowed at their work settings, participants reported opportunities for mutual learning, self-reflection, and collegiality. Fellows observed how members of a PC team collaborate and contribute equally to the care of patients. Mentors found shadowing was a rare opportunity to share their chaplaincy practice with colleagues. It helped them to appreciate different aspects of their work settings and to distinguish between PC and generalist chaplaincy. We discuss the challenges participants experienced while shadowing and offer recommendations for incorporating the practice more widely into chaplaincy education.

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