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The Healing Hospital

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The Healing Hospital
Jackie M. Long
Grand Canyon University
Foundations of Spirituality in Healthcare
HLT 310V-0103
Andre Mooney
09/16/2011

The Healing Hospital
Fighting for your health when you are not feeling well demands lots of rest, less worry and strain. One needs the love and affection from family and friends. Imagine a hospital that provided all of that. All the patient rooms would be filled with warm and tranquil colors, a separate space for family members to sleep, nurses and physicals who treated all patients with the same dignity and respect and love that they would give to their own family. The hospital grounds would have beautiful gardens so the patients can have a place besides the chapel to pray. Night time in the hospital would be a time for true rest; not a time that patients would be awakened through the night to run a blood test. Patient Education would be provided when it’s convenient for not only the patient but for the family as well. The hospital chaplain minister would be willingly available anytime day or night when needed. Nurses would not only be available for providing medical care but also available for emotional support at those times when the patient just needs someone to talk to. These are just a few of the characteristics that one would anticipate to experience at a Healing Hospital. The Healing Hospital is awarded its accreditation through the Healing Baptist Trust. To acquire this designation, a hospital must embody three components: an environment that promotes healing, the latest and most advanced technology and work design, and a philosophy of radical loving care.
The environment of a healing hospital must be quiet, serene and cosmetically attractive. The use of noisy cleaning machines and overhead hospital paging should be avoided during the night while patients are sleeping. “Patients’ bodies perform the most repairs during sleep. Cells generate faster during sleep.”(Eberst, 2008, p. 2) Another way to maintain a quiet and serene environment for patients is to have the floors in the hallway carpeted. Procedures such as blood draws, etc. should be scheduled so it is not interfering with a patient’s rest. Warm and alluring rooms for the patient’s and their family are very important for healing. A holistic approach to the healing process would be to have areas where family members can participate in the patient’s process of healing. Areas such as a garden for prayer and a chapel would allow time for meditation and fostering the patient’s faith and spirituality.
Incorporating advanced technology and the design of the facility mean’s constructing productive spaces for the nurses and physicians and the use of “technology to promote the healing environment.”(Staff, 2008, para. 4) An example of how advanced technology can be used is for lab results, x-ray and ultrasound reports, etc. to be sent straight to the physicians so a diagnosis can be made more efficiently. More privacy for the patients is provided when the hospital staff can use elevators and hallways that are in the back of the hospital.
The culture of radical love is the component in a healing hospital that is the most vital. There are three symbols that encompass this type of service. First, there is the emblem of the golden thread. It’s the reason for the chain. It depicts faith in God. Second, are the “pair of intersecting circles” that “signifies the merging of love and need in the Sacred Encounter, which is the fundamental relationship between caregiver and patient.” (Chapman, 2011, p. 10) The third component is the red heart which is used to symbolize a Servant’s Heart. It also symbolizes love. Together these symbols assist in the holistic method that integrates spirituality. The culture of radical love is about treating the person and not the disease.
The story in the Bible about the Canaanite woman and her faith incorporate all the elements of radical caring love. The story tells of a demon possessed little girl who was severely suffering. She went to Jesus asking for His help. Jesus disciples begged him to tell her to go away. The mother of the little girl begged and begged Jesus asking for healing. The woman had a lot of faith in Jesus as evidenced by Jesus answering, “Woman you have great faith! Your request is granted. And her daughter was healed from that very hour.” Matt 15:28. Doctors and Nurses do the work of the Lord when they provide care to and heal the sick. Because of the spiritual encounter the mother of the ill girl had with the Ultimate Healer, she had been given hope which in turn increased her faith. The woman had faith that God could and would heal her daughter. The heart of Jesus can be described as the heart of a Supreme Servant. He came to earth to find the lost, to heal the sick and provide for the needy. It was because of the faith the woman had in Jesus that healed her daughter.
The challenge in creating a healing hospital is mainly in incorporating the work design and technology. It can be extremely expensive to create the components of a haling hospital if the hospital wasn’t originally planned to be that way. It may not be too hard to add carpeting in the hallways but difficult to add hallways in the back of a hospital. Even though hospitals may display radical loving care, they many not ever be designated as a healing hospital because it lacks the cosmetic components of a healing hospital. Another challenge in creating a healing hospital is the promotion of faith and spirituality. Hospitals do not promote prayer even when the patient is requesting it from their nurse. It is admirable when a Healing Hospital has a radical loving care approach. Hospitals should push to encourage healing the sick through an healing environment, the incorporation of work design and technology and a radical loving care culture. The holistic approach to caring for the sick involves the use of spirituality to truly treat the patient as a whole.

References
Chapman, E. (2011). Five Challenges to a Healing Hospital. In Radical Loving Care Building the Healing Hospital in America (pp. 31-43). Nashville, TN: Erie Chapman Foundation.
Eberst, L. (2008). Healing Hospital. Retrieved from www.bestcompaniesaz.com/pdf/HealingHospital.pdf
Staff (2008, September 17, 2008). Gilbert Mercy’s ’healing’ runs deep. AZcentral.com. Retrieved from http://www.central.com

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