Advancing Spiritual Care Through Research

A Palliative Care Specific Spiritual Assessment: How This Story Evolved

This article reflects a project to create, refine, and use a palliative care specific spiritual assessment, with the intent to implement its use for both an inpatient Palliative Consult Service (PCS) and a Spiritual Health Service (SHS) team. Extensive meetings with these services to confirm a shared understanding of the use of this spiritual assessment to facilitate communication with PCS through consistent language about the patient’s story, suffering, spirit, and sense-making. Following a pilot phase of using this palliative care spiritual assessment, five presentations were shared with the SHS team to explore using this assessment. Although the SHS team decided not to use its content, these presentations spurred dialogue toward what was to become a SHS standardized documentation process, eventually called data, intervention, outcome, plan (DIOP).