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Importance of the Faith Based Community to the Health and Wellness of Older Adults. Linda Jones, DNP, CRNP Assistant Professor of Nursing and Medicine University of Alabama at Birmingham. We are ever bound in community:.

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importance of the faith based community to the health and wellness of older adults

Importance of the Faith Based Community to the Health and Wellness of Older Adults

Linda Jones, DNP, CRNP

Assistant Professor of Nursing and Medicine

University of Alabama at Birmingham

we are ever bound in community
We are ever bound in community:

We build on foundations, we did not lay.We warm ourselves at fires, we did not light.We sit in the shade of trees, we did not plant.We drink from wells, we did not dig.We profit from persons, we did not know.

(adapted from Deut. 6:10-12)

parrish nursing care
Parrish Nursing Care
  • Parish nursing is a recognized specialty practice that combines professional nursing and health ministry.
  • Parish nursing is rooted in the Judeo-Christian tradition, and the historic practice of professional nursing, and is consistent with the basic assumptions of many faiths that we care for self and others as an expression of God's love. www.parishnurses.org
parrish nursing con t
Parrish nursing, con’t
  • …in collaboration with the pastoral staff and congregants, participates in the ongoing transformation of the faith community into sources of health and healing.
  • Through partnership with other community health resources, parish nursing fosters new and creative responses to health and wellness concerns.
  • The parish nurse serves the faith community and advocates with compassion, mercy, and dignity.
challenges
Challenges
  • “One Size does not fit all”
  • Varying needs
  • Needs are not necessarily age related
  • People age in a very individualized manner
  • Complexity of needs of older adults
a complex approach the information system for care of the older adult
A Complex Approach: The Information System for Care of the Older Adult

Socioeconomic considerations

Psychology

Legislation / Regulations

Health education

Community health nursing

Technical nursing skills

Nutrition

Medical Surgical nursing

Rehabilitiation

Ethics

Cultural diversity

cultural challenges
Cultural Challenges
  • African American population often has a distrust of the medical community
  • African Americans are generally very trusting of their faith community
  • This gives the faith based community a unique OPPORTUNITY
societal challenges a negative bias toward older adults
Societal Challenges: A Negative Bias Toward Older Adults

Myths that persist are a type of ageism. These myths / attitudes often relate to an elders:

  • Cognitive function
  • Benefit to society
  • Not teachable
  • Ready to die
  • Smelly
  • Societal drain
slide13

She started painting when she was in her 70s, capturing scenes of rural celebrations and daily life in upstate New York, where she lived most of her life.

usual challenges
Usual Challenges
  • Resources
  • Personnel
  • Commitment
  • Vision
usual challenges16
Usual Challenges
  • Resources
  • Personnel
  • Commitment
  • Vision

You are here today !!!

slide17
Opportunities:

The Role of Lay Caring

slide18
Like professional caring, lay caring is
      • embedded in social structures
      • exercised as a normative practice in family, church and benevolent organizations
      • characterized by respect and compassion/empathy
  • Lay caring is distinctly characterized by
      • trustworthiness
      • reliability/availability
      • mutuality/reciprocity
      • similarity in background and experiences
slide19
Religious individuals may practice moderation and avoid risky behaviors based on
      • specific religious doctrine
      • literal interpretation of Scripture
      • belief that body is a temple of God, to be respected
  • Religious people have healthier lifestyles and perform fewer unhealthy behaviors
      • risky sexual practices
      • alcohol
      • illegal drugs
      • tobacco
  • Religiously involved individuals may have less exposure to unhealthy lifestyles/deviant behaviors
      • social groups do not engage in deviant behaviors
      • social circles do not frequent places with unhealthy lifestyles
slide20
Frequent Church Attendance

Perception of Highly Cohesive Congregation

Perception of More Spiritual/Emotional Support

Deeper Relationship with God

More Optimism

Better Physical, Emotional and Spiritual Health

Model developed by Krause N. Church-based social support and health in old age: Exploration variations by race. Journal of Gerontology. November 2002;57B(6):S332-S347.

Model supported by Data from a national sample supported this model, using global self-rated health as the outcome

The religion-health association was stronger in African Americans.

opportunity diverse needs of community based older adults
Opportunity: Diverse Needs of Community Based Older Adults

Seeing the faith community as a vital link

Knowing that your programs will have an impact

Expanding collaborations

Partnering with other resources to make a difference

identify needs
Identify Needs
  • What are the older adults’ service needs?
  • Does the older adult want services?
  • NOTE: Cognitively intact?
  • Is this something appropriate for congregational care, or do professionals need to be enlisted?
  • Is this elder at risk?
  • Who is/are the caregiver(s)?
life transitions and issues
Life Transitions and Issues
  • Role changes
  • Ageism (societal prejudice)
  • Retirement
  • Grief and loss
  • Increasing health risks
  • Awareness of mortality
  • Reduced Income
  • Shrinking social world
preventing risks to health and well being
Preventing Risks to Health and Well Being
  • Community very important in encouraging and achieving optimal health
  • Cultural factors influence the way people understand diseases such as hypertension and diabetes
  • May involve education, counseling, transportation, assessing risks, improving nutrition, exercise, cognitive and social stimulation, etc.
  • Promotion of maximum independence
preventing risks to health and well being26
Preventing Risks to Health and Well Being
  • Community very important in encouraging and achieving optimal health
  • Cultural factors influence the way people understand diseases such as hypertension and diabetes
  • May involve education, counseling, transportation, assessing risks, improving nutrition, exercise, cognitive and social stimulation, etc.
  • Promotion of maximum independence
pearl maintain independence
“Pearl” MaintainIndependence
  • Older adults need to maintain as much independence as they can for as long as they can.
  • Many aspects of congregational care should be directed by this.
helping with meaningful lifestyles
Helping with Meaningful Lifestyles
  • Spiritual
  • Social
  • Helping others
  • Mentoring opportunities
  • Innovative programs: life review, journaling, forgiveness, transcendence, meaning and purpose, helping the older person to find pleasure and enjoyment in current life activities and circumstances.
dignity
Dignity
  • In our society, one is often judged by appearance and productivity.
  • Every human has intrinsic worth.
  • When the elderly lack the attributes that command dignity for most of secular society, they can derive a sense of value and worth through their connection with God.
  • Eliopoulos, C. Gerontological Nursing.6th ed. (2005) Philadelphia, PA. Lippincott Williams & Wilkins.
acknowledgements
Acknowledgements
  • Slides on Lay Caring

Beverly Rosa Williams, PhD

Assistant Professor

UAB School of Medicine

Division of Gerontology, Geriatrics and Palliative Care

  • Also,

Kelly Flood, MD

Assistant Professor

UAB School of Medicine

Division of Gerontology, Geriatrics and Palliative Care

slide31
References Citedfromhttp://www.directionjournal.org/article/?744Larry Marten, Anabaptist and Congregational Care
  • Banks, Robert. “The Early Church as a Caring Community.” Evangelical Review of Theology 7 (October 1983), 310-27.
  • Bender, Flarold S., “The Anabaptist Vision.” Church History 18 (1944), 3-24.
  • Burck, Russell. “Pastoral Care and the People of God.” Pastoral Psychology 30 (Summer 1982), 139-52.