Vol 17, No 4 (2023)
Research paper
Published online: 2023-06-29

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Spiritual care competence and caring abilities among Polish nurses: a correlation descriptive study

Michał Machul1, Beata Dobrowolska1
Palliat Med Pract 2023;17(4):216-224.


Background: Spiritual care is an obligatory aspect of nursing care for a patient at the end of life and plays an important role in providing quality nursing care. This study aimed to describe the level of spiritual care competence and caring abilities of Polish nurses and to examine the relationship between them.

Participants and methods: In the study based on the Caring Ability Inventory (CAI) and the Spiritual Care Competence Scale (SCCS) questionnaires descriptive, correlational, cross-sectional design was adopted. The study involved 451 clinical nurses.

Results: Respondents’ overall score of SCCS was high (median = 101.22; mean = 103.00; SD = 17.14) and low in the overall score of CAI (median = 185.44; mean = 185.00; SD = 21.05). The respondents who believe that nurses should assess the patient’s spiritual needs obtained statistically higher scores in all subscales and the overall score of SCCS and CAI. The total score of spiritual care competence was also positively correlated with the level of caring abilities (p < 0.01). The caring abilities and competencies to provide spiritual care of Polish nurses correlate, among others, with their age, professional experience, level of education and job satisfaction.

Conclusions: The implementation by academic teachers and nursing managers of strategies promoting patient-centred nursing care and humanistic values will contribute to strengthening the caring abilities of nurses and the skills to provide spiritual care to patients, especially in the most basic human experience of dying.

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