Spiritual Care

Tips for Careworkers:
Spiritual Care

What it is: Spirituality can be a person’s connection to other people, to nature, or to what gives them meaning and purpose.

Spirituality depends on the person. It is not always about religion.

Why it matters: For many people, spirituality is important throughout life and at the end of life. Spiritual pain may lead to a physical response (e.g., increased pain) or an emotional response (e.g., anxiety, depression, or anger).

What I need to know: Spiritual support is an important aspect of palliative care. Showing respect and support for a person’s spirituality can reduce the distress of being ill or dying.

People may appreciate opportunity for discussion with chaplaincy staff, spiritual care practitioners, or faith representatives.


When you interact with the person use:

  • appropriate touch
  • eye contact if appropriate
  • a welcoming unhurried approach to conversation and listening so that the person feels heard and valued.


Be sensitive and respectful of the spiritual, cultural and religious needs of people in your care and their families.



Offer opportunities for a connection with spiritual practices outside of those in the place of care.


My reflections:


What can I do to support someone’s spirituality?


How can my own beliefs affect how I care for other people?


For references and the latest version of all the Tip Sheets visit www.palliaged.com.au/PracticeTipSheets


CareSearch is funded by the Australian Government Department of Health. Updated April 2022

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