What GPs mean by 'spirituality' and how they apply this concept with patients: a qualitative study

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Alistair Appleby, John Swinton, Philip Wilson

Background: Little is known about how the concept of spirituality is understood and applied by GPs.

Aim: To provide a detailed description of how GPs understand the concept of spirituality and apply this with patients.

Design & setting: Nineteen Scottish GPs were interviewed about their perceptions of the concept of spirituality and how they apply this in practice.

Method: An approach informed by grounded theory was used to identify and summarise common themes.

Results: Seven concepts concerning spirituality emerged, some of which are previously unrecognised. Four attitudes to spiritual care and four patterns of spiritual care were identified.

Conclusion: GPs have varying views on what spirituality is, and these relate partly to individual beliefs and experiences. These create considerable variation in the delivery of spiritual care.

Original languageEnglish
Article number18X101469
JournalBJGP open
Volume2
Issue number2
Number of pages9
ISSN2398-3795
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2018

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