New NHS obligation to provide equal pastoral care to non-religious in England
March 6th, 2015
With the publication today of new national guidance, NHS bodies in England will be obliged for the first time to provide pastoral support and care to non-religious people on the same basis as chaplaincy is provided to the religious.
Promoting Excellence in Pastoral, Spiritual & Religious Care marks a significant departure from previous guidance, which focussed solely on religious chaplaincy and the needs of the religious. It makes clear that NHS bodies in England must deliver appropriate pastoral care to the non-religious; it mandates the equal treatment of those with a religion and those without a religion in the receipt of pastoral care; and it makes clear that managers must ensure that a comprehensive service must be in place that meets the needs of the non-religious.