Abstract

The guidelines replace those published in 2003 and provide a comprehensive description of good practice in chaplaincy care for the NHS in England. The document responds to changes in the NHS, society and the widening understanding of spiritual, religious and pastoral care. In the light of the 2010 Equality Act new guidance is provided for the care of patients and service users whatever their religion or belief. The guidelines recognise the development of chaplaincy in a range of specialities including General Practice and in areas such as Paediatrics and Palliative care. Research and innovation are affirmed as important areas for chaplaincy both for improved practice and as a basis for commissioners to understand the benefits of chaplaincy-spiritual care. The implementation of the guidance will improve support for patients, carers, family members, volunteers, and other people accessing NHS services and staff across the health service.