Preparing undergraduate nurses and midwives for spiritual care: Some developments in European education over the last decade

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Mcsherry W., Ross L., Attard J., Van Leeuwen R., Giske T., Kleiven T., ...More

JOURNAL FOR THE STUDY OF SPIRITUALITY, vol.10, pp.55-71, 2020 (Journal Indexed in ESCI) identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 10
  • Publication Date: 2020
  • Doi Number: 10.1080/20440243.2020.1726053
  • Page Numbers: pp.55-71
  • Keywords: European, Spirituality, spiritual care, students, nursing/midwifery, competence, NURSING COMPETENCES, VALIDITY, SCIENCE, HEALTH, SCALE, STATE, FOCUS


In recent years, preparing nurses and midwives to feel competent and confident in providing spiritual care has become the subject of international research. There is an emerging body of evidence affirming the importance of spirituality in promoting the health and wellbeing of individuals. Despite this growing recognition, there are still inconsistencies in the way that undergraduate students in nursing and midwifery are taught and prepared to assess and address this dimension of the person, and fundamentally how these concepts are integrated within programmes of education. This article charts the evolution of a European programme of research, spanning a decade, exploring undergraduate nurses' and midwives' perception of spirituality and perceived competence in providing spiritual care. The research culminated in an educational research study that led to the co-production and development of best practice standards for spiritual care education and the launch of a network to sustain and advance this neglected area of nursing and midwifery practice.