Title

How Hospice Social Workers Make Sense of Religious and Cultural Diversity as it Relates to Death and Dying

Department

Social Work

Date of Paper/Work

2015

Degree Name

Master of Social Work (M.S.W.)

Type of Paper/Work

Clinical research paper

Advisors

Lance T. Peterson

Abstract

Hospice care has become a popular care concept among medical fields and with patients and family members who are terminally ill or have entered into the final stages of their life. Cultural competency is important to the social work profession and it is especially crucial to respecting the culture of a client and his/her loved ones at the end of life. Within the Minneapolis/St. Paul metro, local hospice social workers encounter the culture and religions of various Asian, African, Middle-Eastern and Latino clients. I specifically sought to analyze data from qualitative, semi-structured interviews with six local hospice social workers with the intent of evaluating the education and trainings that local hospice social workers receive in order to best equip them to assist their clients of diverse cultures and religions in relation to death and dying. I found that most of the education and training that the six local hospice social workers that were interviewed have received has been from interpreters, the clients or the internet. The following sections will explain the study and explore the themes in which the hospice social workers were educated; themes include: what is defined as best practice in hospice; clients as teachers of cultural competence; barriers, challenges and opportunities; and recommendations for education and training on religions and cultures.

Keywords

hospice, cultural diversity, religious diversity, social work education, death and dying

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License.