VIDEO: Aged care providers should recognise that good spiritual care begins at the management level and works its way down, says a leading theologian.

John Swinton, Professor in Practical Theology at the University of Aberdeen, said that aged care organisations needed to have a structure in which residents and staff had time for one another, and in which spiritual care was valued.

Spiritual care was about learning to see residents as people rather than a series of tasks, he told the NEWSROOM at the HammondCare International Dementia Conference last week.

“Once you begin to think that way then issues of meaning, purpose and hope come into the picture, because you’re listening for cues in conversations you have with them, they may express they have religious needs or they used to garden a lot and that’s the place they find themselves. So being a good spiritual carer means you’re always attuned to the spiritual in all its form,” he said.

Watch Professor Swinton talk to the NEWSROOM about spiritual care in aged care:

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