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Meaning of Spiritual Care: Iranian Nurses' Experiences

Tirgari, Batool PhD, MSN; Iranmanesh, Sedigheh PhD; Ali Cheraghi, Mohammad PhD; Arefi, Ali PhD

doi: 10.1097/HNP.0b013e318294e774

Spiritual care is an essential component in nursing practice and strongly influenced by the sociocultural context. This article aimed to elucidate the meaning of nurses' experiences of giving spiritual care in southeast of Iran. A phenomenological hermeneutic approach influenced by Ricoeur was used. Eleven staff nurses who were currently working in the 3 major hospitals under the umbrella of the Kerman University of Medical Sciences were interviewed. The meaning of spiritual care was comprehensively understood as meeting patient as a unique being. This can be divided into 3 themes: meeting patient as a being in relationship, meeting patient as a cultural being, and meeting patient as a religious being. The results in this study suggest that education about spirituality and spiritual care should be included in the continuous and in-service education of registered nurses. Spiritual and cultural assessment criteria should be included in this education to improve the provision of holistic care.

Neuroscience Research Center Kerman University of Medical Sciences, Kerman (Ms Tirgari and Dr Iranmanesh); School of Nursing and Midwifery, Tehran University of Medical Sciences, Tehran (Dr Cheraghi); and Faculty of Literature and Humanities school, Shahid Bahonar University of Kerman, Kerman (Dr Arefi), Iran.

Correspondence: Mohammad Ali Cheraghi, PhD, School of Nursing and Midwifery, Tehran University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran (

The authors declare no conflicts of interest.

© 2013 by Wolters Kluwer Health | Lippincott Williams & Wilkins