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Pastoral Care in the Hospital

Inpatient Services
Identification of Your Religion
When you register at a hospital, you are given the opportunity to identify your religious affiliation. Routine visitation is organized from the information collected at the time of admission. A request for a pastoral care visit can be made at any time and will be responded to immediately.

Individuals who prefer not to have a visitation or prefer not to tell their religion are free to do so. Your wishes will always be respected. Individuals who do not have a religious affiliation are welcome to have the pastoral care support role provided to them by non-denominational pastoral care staff.

Occasionally ,the proper information cannot be collected through the admitting and registration process, in which case clerical staff will collect and update the data after admission. 
Chaplaincy Services
The major denominations and the smaller faith groups have individuals and teams to offer a wide array of pastoral services. The ministries to the patients and families include prayer, scripture readings, comfort and support, counseling and sacraments. For chaplain contact information, visit our Contact us page.  

When patients present to an emergency room the nursing staff and physicians will determine the seriousness of the illness and based on that medical judgment may take the initiative to contact the pastoral care staff for their involvement and support. Patients and families are also welcome to request pastoral care services, regardless of the seriousness of the illness. 

Pre-Surgery Visitation
Chaplains will visit patients admitted to hospital prior to surgery. Patients being admitted on the day of surgery can request that their chaplain visit them prior to surgery in the pre-surgery area. Staff in the pre-admission clinic will provide the opportunity to make this request and forward the request with the time and place of surgery to the Pastoral Care Department. 

Routine Visitation
Patients admitted to hospital who identify a religion and request a visit are visited on a regular basis. The denominational chaplains and/or contact persons in the Pastoral Care office organize visits. An initial visit is usually made within the first 48 hours. Patients admitted to critical care areas such as an intensive care unit or a coronary care unit are visited daily. Patients are typically visited by a representative from their own faith community.

For more information about pastoral care in the hospital setting, please contact us. For contact information in your area, click here.


Updated Sep 3, 2019