Article Title

Evaluation of the interprofessional spiritual care education curriculum in Australia: Online

Abstract

Objective

Spiritual care is a component of quality palliative care, but healthcare providers have reported lack of training as a barrier to its provision. This paper describes the evaluation of the Interprofessional Spiritual Care Educational Curriculum (ISPEC)© which is a six-module evidence-based curriculum developed for teaching interprofessional spiritual care based on a generalist-specialist model of spiritual care. Method

The course was run online in 2020 and attended by 20 healthcare workers who were invited to join the evaluation. Questionnaires were completed by participants before the training program (baseline), immediately after the training (post), and 3 months following the end of the program (follow-up). After the follow-up questionnaires, participants were invited to join a Focus Group to expand on their responses. Descriptive and exploratory statistical analysis was performed on quantitative data, and qualitative data was subjected to Thematic Analysis. Results

Exploratory data analysis showed that self-reported competence, confidence, and comfort in providing spiritual care significantly improved following training (p = 0.002) and were maintained over time (p = 0.034). In qualitative analysis, the main themes were: (1) overwhelmed by content; (2) the importance of practical training; (3) spiritual care is for everyone; (4) spiritual care should come from the heart; (5) training needs to be inclusive; and (6) spirituality is culturally specific. Significance of results

This article describes an evaluation of the ISPEC© spiritual care training course administered to an Australian healthcare cohort using an online format. These preliminary findings suggest that the ISPEC© program is effective in improving the ability of healthcare professionals to provide spiritual care. More work is needed to improve the cultural relevance of the program in Australia.

Keywords

Evaluation, Healthcare providers, Spirituality, Spiritual care, Training

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