Assignment Patient’s Spiritual Needs

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PHI 413 Benchmark – Patient’s Spiritual Needs: Case Analysis

Assignment: Patient’s Spiritual Needs

  • In 200-250 words, respond to the following:      Should the physician allow Mike to continue making decisions that seem to      him to be irrational and harmful to James, or would that mean a disrespect      of a patient’s autonomy? Explain your rationale.
  • In 400-450 words, respond to the following: How      ought the Christian think about sickness and health? How should a      Christian think about medical intervention? What should Mike as a      Christian do? How should he reason about trusting God and treating James      in relation to what is truly honoring the principles of beneficence and      nonmaleficence in James’s care?
  • In 200-250 words, respond to the following: How      would a spiritual needs assessment help the physician assist Mike      determine appropriate interventions for James and for his family or others      involved in his care?

Remember to support your responses with the topic study materials.

While APA style is not required for the body of this assignment, solid academic writing is expected, and documentation of sources should be presented using APA formatting guidelines, which can be found in the APA Style Guide, located in the Student Success Center.

Assignment Patient’s Spiritual Need

Assignment Patient’s Spiritual Need

This assignment uses a rubric. You are required to submit this assignment to LopesWrite.


1. Decisions that need to be made by the physician and the father are analyzed from both perspectives with a deep understanding of the complexity of the principle of autonomy. Analysis is supported by the case study, topic study materials, or Topic 3 assignment responses. 20%

2. Decisions that need to be made by the physician and the father are analyzed with deep understanding of the complexity of the Christian perspective, as well as with the principles of beneficence and nonmaleficence. Analysis is supported by the case study, topic study materials, or Topic 3 assignment responses. 20%

3. How a spiritual needs assessment would help the physician assist the father determine appropriate interventions for his son, his family, or others involved in the care of his son is clearly analyzed with a deep understanding of the connection between a spiritual needs assessment and providing appropriate interventions. Analysis is supported by the case study, topic study materials, or Topic 3 assignment responses. 30%

4. Thesis is comprehensive and contains the essence of the paper. Thesis statement makes the purpose of the paper clear. 7%

5. Clear and convincing argument presents a persuasive claim in a distinctive and compelling manner. All sources are authoritative. 8%

6. Writer is clearly in command of standard, written, academic English. 5%

7. All format elements are correct. 5%

8. Sources are completely and correctly documented, as appropriate to assignment and style, and format is free of error. 5%

There are three different parts to this paper:

· Part one deals with Mike’s decision-making capabilities. 

· Part two deals with how to think issues related to sickness and health.

· Part three deals with a spiritual assessment.

Read “Doing a Culturally Sensitive Spiritual Assessment: Recognizing Spiritual Themes and Using the HOPE Questions,” by Anandarajah, from AMA Journal of Ethics(2005).

Read “End of Life and Sanctity of Life,” by Reichman, from American Medical Association Journal of Ethics, formerly Virtual Mentor (2005).

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Benchmark – Patient’s Spiritual Needs: Case Analysis

Religion and spirituality are critical issues for most individuals that seek medical care. However, some healthcare professionals may fail to consider spiritual needs and religious beliefs when dealing with complex medical situations and decisions for their patients or families (SSorajjakool et al., 2018). The purpose of this paper is to analyze the spiritual needs in light of the Christian worldview based on the case study “Healing and Autonomy.”

Allowing Mike to Continue Making Decisions

Respect for autonomy is one of biomedical principles as it recognizes that patients have power over their bodies and the kind of treatment that they would to have (Minton et al., 2018). However, in this case, James is a minor and the decisions about any medical interventions comes from his father. The decisions that Mike makes seem irrational and harmful to James health. For instance, Mike is not ready to have Samuel, James’ twin brother, donate his kidney. Consequently, the physician should not allow Mike to continue making decisions that seem unreasonable and detrimental to James’ health. While the physician has a legal and ethical duty to respect the parental decisions concerning the care of their children, they also have a legal and moral responsibility to intervene during critical and emergency cases to save the lives of patients, especially minors. Mike and Joan believe that James can be healed miraculously due to their religious beliefs and spiritual perception of the situation. The postponement of James’ treatment has exacerbated his condition to the level of requiring a permanent dialysis and the need for a kidney transplant.

Health care professionals have responsibility of protecting susceptible patients from perceived medical negligence. Health care professionals have legal mandates to protect children vulnerable to dangers of disability or death due to their parents’ inactions and decisions that seem to be detrimental to the welfare of their children (Oman & Lukoff, 2018). Healthcare professionals like physicians have justifications to conduct life-saving interventions over the parents’ objection when the life of a minor patient is in danger. Pediatric health care practitioners have legal and ethical duties to make decisions and offer care that benefits the minor patient and not essentially what the parents desire or request. The implication is that the physician should not allow Mike to make unreasonable decisions that have negative effects on James’ health and wellness.

How a Christian Ought to Think About Sickness and Health, Medical Intervention

The role of religion and spirituality in health, sickness, and healing is a core influence on the behaviors of health care providers and individual’s beliefs. Christianity has different denominations and each has a certain way of looking at sickness and health (SSorajjakool et al., 2018). However, many Christians believe that sickness is a form of reprisal for one’s sins and calls on the affected individuals to repent and be cured. Christians believe that sickness provides an opportunity for God to demonstrate his works through one’s faith. Those who fall sick may have little or no faith and should trust in God. However, Christians believe that good health is a gift and compensation from God for being faithful and following His teachings or commands. For instance, when Mike’s son fails to get healing from the church, Mike wonders if he lacks enough or if God is punishing him or his son.

Studies indicate that religious people ask themselves questions about sickness and the reasons for its occurrence (Timmins & Caldeira, 2017; Minton et al., 2018). However, they should know that sickness is part of life and an opportunity for God to manifest His greatness. Christians should understand that with even greatest faith, sickness is part of human suffering and meant to make them close to God. They should take sickness seriously and seek medical interventions while trusting that God will work through the efforts of the healthcare providers and not abandoning treatment for prayers alone like Mike. Christians believe that God created man in his image and gifted him power and knowledge as manifested through medical innovations and discoveries to benefit mankind. Therefore, they should have a positive attitude towards both sickness and health.

Medical Intervention & What Mike Should Do as a Christian

Christian need to view medical interventions positively since they help treat diseases and illnesses. Christians should consider medical interventions as a way of respecting God’s command for people to seek treatment and not a demonstration of a lack of or little faith (SSorajjakool et al., 2018). In Mathew 9:12, Jesus asserts that sick people do not seek medical treatment but those afflicted by diseases will look for a physician. God does not command Christians to keep away from medical interventions or decline surgical procedures and organ transplants. Medical knowledge comes from God as a gift to benefit people. The implication is that Christians should seek medical care as a means of honoring God with their bodies and actions as well as respecting their bodies as God’s temple that should be kept healthy and sound.

Mike should permit James to undergo the recommended medical interventions with the hope that God will intervene through the healthcare professionals and heal his son. As a Christian, Mike need to know that by permitting his son to have the treatment, it will mean that God can and at times choose to cure the sick but expects them to use the provisions that he has offered for them like medical interventions. Mike needs to know that doctors treat but God heals and there can be no healing without treatment.

To respect the principle of beneficence, Mike should consider his son’s situation and understand that a kidney transplant will save his life (Minton et al., 2018). Mike should consider beneficence as the conventional role of the medical doctors being a Good Samaritan who comes to the rescue or the sick and relieves their pain and suffering. Mike should honor the principle of non-maleficence by accepting a kidney transplant for his son as the only way to treat him and will not present any harm. Mike should allow the team to treat the boy as he continues to pray for God’s healing intervention.

Role of a Spiritual Needs Assessment

A spiritual needs assessment would help the physician to understand Mike and determine the most appropriate interventions for James and members of his family as well as those involved in the treatment process. Through the assessment, the physician will recognize their spiritual needs concerning medical care and use of interventions that will be respected by the family and lead to positive response and attitude by those involved, especially the parents (Caldeira & Timmins, 2017). A spiritual assessment provides the opportunity or context to discuss the patient’s and their family’s experiences in coping with disease and beliefs that may reinforce or have negative effects on medical decisions and choices.

The measures needed to spiritually assess a patient or client include supporting spiritual beliefs, availing resources and participation in spiritual activities. The physician should ensure that there is a chaplain to conduct the assessment since he does not possess the professional competencies and skills to conduct a spiritual assessment on Mike (Timmins & Caldeira, 2017). Based on the spiritual assessment outcomes for all those involved in the case, the physician will make the decision on the type of medical interventions that are appropriate for the patient. The physician needs to know that having a spiritual assessment will be significant in the next treatment phase since it will streamline the expectations and beliefs alignment with those involved, particularly Mike.


The need for spiritual assessment is essential in understanding medical interventions for patients. As demonstrated in the case study, Christians should have a positive attitude towards medical interventions and treatment. They must understand that sickness and health are part of life and meant to show God’s natural plan for humanity. The implication is that Christians should view all medical processes and interventions as arising from God’s gift and love to benefit humanity and not a lack of faith in his healing power. 


Caldeira, S., & Timmins, F. (2017). Implementing spiritual care interventions. Nursing Standard,

31(34). doi: 10.7748/ns.2017.e10313.

Minton, M. E., Isaacson, M. J., Varilek, B. M., Stadick, J. L., & O’Connell‐Persaud, S. (2018). A

willingness to go there: Nurses and spiritual care. Journal of Clinical Nursing, 27(1-2), 173-181. doi: 10.1111/jocn.13867.

Oman, D., & Lukoff, D. (2018). Mental health, religion, and spirituality. Why religion and

            spirituality matter for public health, 225-243.

SSorajjakool, S., Carr, M. F., Nam, J. J., Sorajjakool, S., & Bursey, E. (Eds.). (2017). World

            religions for healthcare professionals. Taylor & Francis.

Timmins, F., & Caldeira, S. (2017). Assessing the spiritual needs of patients. Nursing Standard

(2014+), 31(29), 47. doi: 10.7748/ns.2017.e10312

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