Parish Nurse Program
Established in 1991, the Parish Nurse Program is a unique partnership between Resurrection Health Care and the local faith community to promote physical, emotional, and spiritual health among its people. The parish nurse focuses on the promotion of health and prevention of illness and serves as a:
- Personal Health Counselor - To discuss health concerns with parishioners and make home, hospital, and nursing home visits as needed. The parish nurse is concerned about meeting the needs of the whole person-body, mind, and spirit.
- Health Educator - To promote an understanding of the relationship between lifestyle, attitudes, faith, and well-being. Parish nurses work with a health committee based in the local faith community to determine the health education offerings for the church.
- Referral Service - To help people utilize church and community resources and services. Parish nurses provide referral information and physicians, medical equipment, home health nursing, nursing homes, assisted living, retirement communities, and senior services.
- Facilitator - To recruit and empower volunteers and support groups within faith communities. Parish nurses are familiar with the willingness of church members to donate time and talent in the service of others.
Having a nurse in a church gives people access to care. Parish nurses document the number of people they see in their church office, church member's homes, hospitals, nursing homes, and retirement communities. Monthly reports are provided regarding the number of referrals made to health care institution professionals, community organizations, and church leadership.
Statistics demonstrate that the majority of people seen by the parish nurse are the elderly. Limited resources and episodes of compounding loss, such as loss of spouse, income, independence, mobility, vision, hearing, etc. are some of the many reasons why the older adult appreciates the contacts with the parish nurse.
Resurrection Health Care currently has six parish nurses working throughout the Chicagoland area. Four of the nurses each serve a large Roman Catholic congregation. One nurse divides her time between two smaller Catholic parishes. The sixth nurse works with several churches in an ecumenical program of support for older adults, known as Christian Churches Caring.
For more information, contact the Director of the Parish Nurse Program at 773-792-8650.