PHI 413 ElyseeJoanne Benchmark Patient’s Spiritual Needs: Case Analysis

Case Study: Healing and Autonomy

The primary focus of nursing is on restoring and maintaining health. God made us in His image, so every human life has value (Cox & Thompson, 2022). This is what we value most, not our competence or proficiency. Healthcare offers many tools for preventing illness but is often viewed with suspicion. This case study focuses on Mike and Joanne’s parenting of their son James. Following the Christian healing service, they were convinced that their son would be made well again. They said no to the healthcare professionals’ suggestions that their son undergoes temporary dialysis. Instead, they turned to a Christian healer, placing their faith in him to restore their son’s health. James’ health deteriorated due to their parental decision. Only a kidney transplant, James’ doctor said, has a chance of saving him. Following an exhaustive search, James’ identical twin Samuel is the sole possible kidney donor. Mike is faced with the difficult choice of relying on God’s miracle to heal his son’s illness or allowing Samuel to give a kidney to James. This paper discusses a patient’s spiritual needs, considering the Christian worldview.

Patient Autonomy

Medical professionals face difficult choices in the case study’s scenario. The doctor respected the parents’ reliance on faith in treating James, even if their decision had a negative impact on his health. But now comes the time to make a decision that could mean life or death. Anyone who has seen James in his current condition might question whether his parents are acting in his best interest. This author believes that James’s parents ought not to be stripped of their right to make decisions about their son’s medical care. Given the family’s current situation, James’ parents must remain actively involved in his care.

Given the scope of the issue they face, they should be afforded some time to deliberate on the massive nature of the choice they will soon be called upon to make. As a result, medical experts would have more time to educate parents on important health topics and offer them spiritual direction (Batstone et al., 2020). That would point James’s parents in the proper direction so they could come to an agreement about what is best for James and his sibling. It is crucial that everyone in the family weigh in on the decision-making process. This writer believes that the case study shows a lack of respect for self – determination because both sons, despite their young ages, should have input into their healthcare decisions.

Sickness And Health from A Christian Perspective

Different people draw strength and optimism from different places while they’re sick. Christians put their faith in God and turn to Him for strength, inspiration, and comfort. Many people believe that the introduction of sin and its continued impact on the world is what ultimately causes all diseases. Humans’ alienation from God is seen to be the root source of illness, misery, and death (Horden, 2020). Being in fellowship with God and carrying out His will form the bedrock of Christian belief. God’s people will have the fortitude they need to weather any storm.

The Bible teaches that each of our physical bodies is a sacred temple that God built in His likeness. To that end, God commands that we take all necessary measures to safeguard His works. The fact that God made us in His likeness means that we have the capacity to think critically and come up with novel solutions to problems, such as the medical advances that have made our lives so much easier. God has blessed us with the ability to use medicine to save lives, improve people’s health, and enhance their quality of life (Cox & Thompson, 2022). Although we may place a higher value on our religious requirements, Jesus taught us that we should not overlook our physical needs.

James’s parents must also take this news. Mike needs to understand that God usually uses individuals to execute his will, and not just miracles, so that he can trust them more. Therefore, Mike should have faith in God and hope that the medical care provided by the healthcare specialists would improve James’ health. Both of James’s parents need to come to terms with the possibility that medical technology, which God blessed humanity with the ability to invent, will be James’s best chance for recovery. Christians should not see medical innovations as incompatible with their faith but rather as an integral part of God’s plan to save the world from its sick.

God appears to be telling both of James’ parents that they must put their confidence in him, in addition to western medicine, if they want James to recover. When looking for ways to assist James, parents should be guided by the principles of beneficence and nonmaleficence. In that manner, youngsters could also learn that the Bible calls us to be selfless givers at all times. Further, it instructs us to avoid causing harm to others and instead focuses on improving their well-being. Perhaps in the end, James’ parents will consent to a transplant because they see how much it will improve their son’s quality of life, and that will be the miracle they have been praying for.

Spiritual Needs Assessment Aid in Medical Interventions

Healthcare providers have a responsibility to attend to and respect individuals’ spiritual demands in addition to their physical ones. Medical care should take into account patients’ religious and spiritual requirements. The spiritual beliefs of the patient and their family and their perspective on death and dying might shed light on how best to address the patient’s condition and management (Molina-Mula & Gallo-Estrada, 2020). Therefore, it is imperative to complete an accurate spiritual evaluation so that Mike and his family can receive the necessary spiritual care. If the family’s religious beliefs are taken into consideration, everyone may feel more at ease and have more faith in the doctors treating them. Medical care providers should treat patients with kindness irrespective of their religious or moral beliefs. The provision of spirituality can offer tranquillity and create motivation for healing even when the prognosis for a disease is not particularly positive.

In this scenario, Mike’s doctor can consider his family’s spiritual beliefs while making treatment recommendations. He can assure them that the medical therapy will produce the desired, beneficial result, but they must still rely on God’s help during the process. James’ medical care may incorporate the family’s decision that he should get better after attending the religious healing ceremony they had at the outset. Mike may be able to make a connection between God’s creation and his medical treatment if his family’s spirituality is incorporated into his care. This may help him understand that God works through all individuals to restore the well-being and joy of His devotees.


Batstone, E., Bailey, C., & Hallett, N. (2020). Spiritual care provision to end‐of‐life patients: A systematic literature review. Journal of Clinical Nursing, 29(19-20), 3609-3624.

Cox, G. R., & Thompson, N. (2022). Christianity. In Managing Death: International Perspectives (pp. 43-48). Cham: Springer International Publishing.

Horden, P. (2020). Sickness and Healing. The Oxford Handbook of Christian Monasticism, 403.

Molina-Mula, J., & Gallo-Estrada, J. (2020). Impact of nurse-patient relationship on quality of care and patient autonomy in decision-making. International Journal Of Environmental Research And Public Health, 17(3), 835.

WEEK 5 PHI 413 Benchmark – Patient’s Spiritual Needs: Case Analysis

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Requires Lopeswrite

Assessment Description

In addition to the topic Resources, use the chart you completed and questions you answered in the Topic 3 about “Case Study: Healing and Autonomy” as the basis for your responses in this assignment.

Answer the following questions about a patient’s spiritual needs in light of the Christian worldview.

  1. In 200-250 words, respond to the following: Should the physician allow Mike to continue making decisions that seem to him to be irrational and harmful to James, or would that mean a disrespect of a patient’s autonomy? Explain your rationale.
  2. In 400-500 words, respond to the following: How ought the Christian think about sickness and health? How should a Christian think about medical intervention? What should Mike as a Christian do? How should he reason about trusting God and treating James in relation to what is truly honoring the principles of beneficence and nonmaleficence in James’s care?
  3. In 200-250 words, respond to the following: How would a spiritual needs assessment help the physician assist Mike determine appropriate interventions for James and for his family or others involved in his care?

Remember to support your responses with the topic Resources.

While APA style is not required for the body of this assignment, solid academic writing is expected, and documentation of sources should be presented using APA formatting guidelines, which can be found in the APA Style Guide, located in the Student Success Center.

This assignment uses a rubric. Please review the rubric prior to beginning the assignment to become familiar with the expectations for successful completion.

You are required to submit this assignment to LopesWrite. A link to the LopesWrite technical support articles is located in Class Resources if you need assistance.

Benchmark Information

This benchmark assignment assesses the following programmatic competencies:

BS in Health Sciences 1.2; BS Nursing (RN to BSN ) 5.2

Assess for the spiritual needs and provide appropriate interventions for individuals, families, and groups.



Rubric Criteria

Decision-Making and Principle of Autonomy
Criteria Description

Decision-Making and Principle of Autonomy

Decisions that need to be made by the physician and the father are analyzed from both perspectives with a deep understanding of the complexity of the principle of autonomy. Analysis is supported by the case study, topic study materials, or Topic 3 assignment responses.


Decision-Making, Christian Perspective, and the Principles of Beneficence and Nonmaleficence
Criteria Description

Decision-Making, Christian Perspective, and the Principles of Beneficence and Nonmaleficence

Decisions that need to be made by the physician and the father are clearly analyzed with details according to the Christian perspective and the principles of beneficence and nonmaleficence. Analysis is supported by the case study, topic study materials, or Topic 3 assignment responses.


Spiritual Needs Assessment and Intervention
Criteria Description

Spiritual Needs Assessment and Intervention (C1.2, 5.2)

How a spiritual needs assessment would help the physician assist the father determine appropriate interventions for his son, his family, or others involved in the care of his son is clearly analyzed with a deep understanding of the connection between a spiritual needs assessment and providing appropriate interventions. Analysis is supported by the case study, topic study materials, or Topic 3 assignment responses.


Mechanics of Writing (includes spelling, punctuation, grammar, language use)
Criteria Description

Mechanics of Writing (includes spelling, punctuation, grammar, language use)

  1. Excellent

10 points

Writer is clearly in command of standard, written, academic English.


Documentation of Sources
Criteria Description

Documentation of Sources (citations, footnotes, references, bibliography, etc., as appropriate to assignment and style)



Practicing Dignity: An Introduction to Christian Values and Decision-Making in Health Care

Read Chapters 5 from Practicing Dignity.

View Resource

GCU Technical Support – Field Experience Site Information Form

Refer to the “Field Experience Site Information Form” page in the GCU Technical Support Help Center for further instructions from

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Doing a Culturally Sensitive Spiritual Assessment: Recognizing Spiritual Themes and Using the HOPE Questions

Read “Doing a Culturally Sensitive Spiritual Assessment: Recognizing Spiritual Themes and Using the HOPE Questions,” by Anan

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End of Life and Sanctity of Life, Commentary 1

Read “End of Life and Sanctity of Life,, Commentary 1,” by Reichman, from American Medical Association Journal of Ethics

… Read More

Assessing the Spiritual Needs of Patients

Read ” Assessing the Spiritual Needs of Patients” by Timmins and Caldeira, from Nursing Standard(2017).

Optional – Topic 5: Optional Resources

For additional information, see the “Topic 5: Optional Resources” that are recommended.


Case Study: Healing and Autonomy

Mike and Joanne are the parents of James and Samuel, identical twins born 8 years ago. James is currently suffering from acute glomerulonephritis, kidney failure. James was originally brought into the hospital for complications associated with a strep throat infection. The spread of the A streptococcus infection led to the subsequent kidney failure. James’s condition was acute enough to warrant immediate treatment. Usually cases of acute glomerulonephritis caused by strep infection tend to improve on their own or with an antibiotic. However, James also had elevated blood pressure and enough fluid buildup that required temporary dialysis to relieve.

The attending physician suggested immediate dialysis. After some time of discussion with Joanne, Mike informs the physician that they are going to forego the dialysis and place their faith in God. Mike and Joanne had been moved by a sermon their pastor had given a week ago, and also had witnessed a close friend regain mobility when she was prayed over at a healing service after a serious stroke. They thought it more prudent to take James immediately to a faith healing service instead of putting James through multiple rounds of dialysis. Yet, Mike and Joanne agreed to return to the hospital after the faith healing services later in the week, and in hopes that James would be healed by then.

Two days later the family returned and was forced to place James on dialysis, as his condition had deteriorated. Mike felt perplexed and tormented by his decision to not treat James earlier. Had he not enough faith? Was God punishing him or James? To make matters worse, James’s kidneys had deteriorated such that his dialysis was now not a temporary matter and was in need of a kidney transplant. Crushed and desperate, Mike and Joanne immediately offered to donate one of their own kidneys to James, but they were not compatible donors. Over the next few weeks, amidst daily rounds of dialysis, some of their close friends and church members also offered to donate a kidney to James. However, none of them were tissue matches.

James’s nephrologist called to schedule a private appointment with Mike and Joanne. James was stable, given the regular dialysis, but would require a kidney transplant within the year. Given the desperate situation, the nephrologist informed Mike and Joanne of a donor that was an ideal tissue match, but as of yet had not been considered—James’s brother Samuel.

Mike vacillates and struggles to decide whether he should have his other son Samuel lose a kidney or perhaps wait for God to do a miracle this time around. Perhaps this is where the real testing of his faith will come in? Mike reasons, “This time around it is a matter of life and death. What could require greater faith than that?”