Chaplaincy Services for Muslim Patients in New York City Hospitals: Assessing Needs, Barriers, and the Role of Muslim Chaplains
Religion and spirituality are the first, and sometimes only, available sources of comfort for many hospital patients facing difficult events. Since chaplaincy is most commonly recognized as a Judeo-Christian practice, other spiritual perspectives receive less attention. This study assesses three areas: the existing chaplaincy care services available for Muslim patients in New York City hospitals, as perceived by chaplains and directors of chaplaincy departments; the different ways that Muslim and non-Muslim chaplains approach pastoral care and their methods of providing religious and spiritual treatment for Muslim patients; and the important roles Muslim chaplains play when serving Muslim patients in hospitals and other health care settings. This analysis of 56 pastoral care directors and 33 Muslim and non-Muslim chaplains provides information about the existing services available to Muslim patients in NYC hospitals, the approaches used in serving Muslim patients, and the roles that Muslim chaplains provide in health care settings.