A questionnaire-based study of attitudes to spirituality in mental health practitioners and the relevance of the concept of spiritually competent care

Melanie Rogers, John Wattis, John Stephenson, Wajid Khan, Stephen Curran

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


In the light of the increasing recognition of the relevance of spirituality in person-centred, holistic care, this study examines the attitudes of a convenience sample of mental health practitioners, including nurses, to the concepts of spirituality in general and in clinical practice. A series of 5-point Likert-style items assessed two key domains of Spirituality in Everyday life (SEDL) and Spirituality in Practice (SIP). The questionnaire was derived from one previously used with health care educators (including nurses). Each item was scored from 1 point (Strongly Disagree) to 5 points (Strongly Agree). Additional information about how far practitioners believed spirituality had been integrated in their education and how much they believed that spirituality related to religion was also ascertained. Three further items, not part of the main questionnaire, dealt with respondents’ views of spirituality competent practice, in the light of a description provided as part of the questionnaire. Data were collected from 104 respondents. Standard statistical procedures, including reliability analyses, were applied to the data. Respondents who viewed spirituality to be distinct from religion, or a place of worship, were likely to place a higher value on spirituality in everyday life; while respondents who experienced the integration of spirituality within their pre-registration training and/or clinical education were likely to place a higher value on the place of spirituality in practice. The possible reasons for these associations are discussed in the light of the importance of spiritual care as a part of person-centred, holistic practice.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1162-1172
Number of pages11
JournalInternational Journal of Mental Health Nursing
Issue number5
Early online date8 Jul 2019
Publication statusPublished - 1 Oct 2019


Cite this