Spirituality in the Homebound Elderly
Sr. Rosita M. Brennan, PhD, RN
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Spiritual care is a requirement of holistic nursing care. The spiritual dimension has been identified as a means for the elderly to cope with the problems of life that result from losses and longevity. The purpose of this descriptive study was to explore the role of spirituality in the homebound elderly and specifically to examine its relationship to Erikson's stage of integrity versus despair. One hypothesis was proposed: the achievement of integrity versus despair in the homebound elderly is positively related to the level of spirituality. The quantitative component incorporated three questionnaires (Demographic Data Form, Spirituality Assessment Guide, and Lifeview Inventory) and elicited data from 69 participants: Catholics (25), Protestants (22), and Jewish (22). The qualitative component employed a Focused Interview Guide which was used with a subsample of 26. Statistical analysis included descriptive statistics, the Pearson's Product-Moment Correlation, Regression Analysis, one-way analysis of variance, and t-tests. The taped interviews were transcribed and used to identify themes. The research hypothesis was supported (r =.4857 p < 0.01). No significant difference was found between the religious denominations and the Lifeview Inventory. There was a significant difference in the Spirituality Assessment Guide found between the Jewish respondents and the Catholic and Protestant respondents (p < 0.05). All but four of the respondents identified prayer or thoughts of God as a coping mechanism when dealing with feelings of sadness, frustration, and/or depression. God was described as being active in the lives of all the Catholic and Protestant and one Jewish respondents. The remaining Jewish respondents were uncertain as to the place of God in their lives. While the concept of spirituality was difficult for the respondents to define, they were able to delineate the ways in which it affected their lives. The respondents perceived that their spirituality changed over the years becoming more important and meaningful to them. Illness did not affect the spirituality of most of the respondents. Personal prayer was the most common expression of spirituality. Sharing their spiritual beliefs with another person was an important aspect of their spirituality. Receiving spiritual care from nurses was seen as a positive action that would be welcomed.
This dissertation has also been disseminated through the ProQuest Dissertations and Theses database. Dissertation/thesis number: 9421553; ProQuest document ID: 304090094. The author still retains copyright.
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|Review Type||None: Degree-based Submission|
|Research Approach||Mixed/Multi Method Research|
|Keywords||Holistic Nursing Care;
Spirituality in Elderly;
Mental Health in Elderly
|CINAHL Subject(s)||Spirituality--Evaluation--In Old Age;
|Grantor||The Catholic University of America|
|Advisor||O'Brien, Mary Elizabeth|
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