Graduation Year


Document Type

Senior Thesis


Bachelor of Science in Nursing

Primary Major


Primary Minor


Second Minor

Leadership Studies

Thesis Advisor

Olivia Catolico, Ph.D, RN, CNL, RN-BC


Intensive care unit (ICU) nurses play a crucial role in providing physiological stabilizing care in a dynamic and fast-paced environment, often marked by constant changes and variability in complex patients. Despite their specialization, the aspect of spiritual care tends to be overlooked, particularly in the context of end-of-life care. This is significant because previous studies have shown that a lack of spiritual care leads to poorer health outcomes, decreased coping, increased depression, and diminished quality of life for patients. This research proposal aims to investigate the spiritual care competency among ICU nurses who partake in spiritual care-based training, with the overarching goal of promoting holistic patient care, especially for patients approaching the end of life. The literature review encompasses a threefold examination of spiritual care practice from diverse perspectives, including those of nurses, patients, and chaplains. The focus is on identifying barriers to spiritual care nursing practice, understanding the impacts of spiritual care on patients' well-being (or the lack thereof), exploring nurses' perceptions regarding their capacity to provide spiritual care, and evaluating the effectiveness of spiritual training sessions. Building upon these insights, a quasi-experimental study has been designed to assess the effects of spiritual care training on improving nurse competency and enhancing holistic patient care. The findings from this research have the potential to contribute to the development of targeted interventions and training programs that address the specific spiritual care needs of ICU nurses, ultimately enhancing the quality of care provided to patients, particularly those nearing the end of life.