In association with Parish Nursing Ministries UK we have appointed our own Parish Nurse, Jenny Davis RN. Parish Nurses are registered nurses who work for/on behalf of local Churches.
Jenny has a community-wide role, providing care & health advice within & beyond the fellowship of SBC, and ‘across the community’ in association with the Crosslinks Centre. The role involves direct contact with individuals, liaison with GPs and other healthcare professionals, support for the Pastoral Care Team at SBC, and much more.
Jenny can be contacted by email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Most people with health needs spend very little time in hospital or hospices where spiritual care happens through chaplaincy. Unless their need is known by a local minister, people may receive very little in the way of spiritual care in the community, other than that occasionally offered through community mental health teams, or cancer care nurses, but community health services are limited and have to be directed to the most needy.
What about those who do not need home treatments or injections? Is anyone there to make the connections between all the services that are available? To explain things that are not understood? To signpost people to appropriate agencies? Is anyone there to recruit and coordinate volunteer help? To encourage self-help? To promote a healthy lifestyle for faith groups, and the communities they serve?
Professional nurses are trained to coordinate appropriate care around the health needs of an individual or community. Many entered nursing because they felt a sense of vocation arising from their faith commitment. Most church communities have at least one registered nurse in the congregation. Yet their skills may not be recognised or used within the faith community.
In the NHS, staff are not encouraged to speak of faith. But the NHS recognises that spiritual care is important, and it is also looking for sustainable ways to involve the third sector.
The church derives its wholistic view of health from the ministry of Jesus and is looking for sustainable ways to be missional in its practical work, and pastoral in its mission initiatives. Parish Nursing addresses both these areas.