An evidenced based research
presentation.
By Mary DeWitt, Rick Loenser,
Dawn Koolman and Terri Sand
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Prayer promoting good health.
Nurses, as health professionals could play an
important role by praying with or for, patients.
Evidence will support positive outcomes in
patient’s physical conditions .
Overview
What is prayer?
Petitionary
Intercessory
Adoration
Ritual
Prayer
Meditative Prayer
Colloquoil prayer
What is Meditation?
Effects of Prayer
Coping
Arrest the progression
of illness
 Remission or
complete healing
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Approaches
Semi-structured
interview
20 participants
Watson’s Theoretical
Framework
Participants from
several
denominations
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Findings
5 main cluster themes
Subthemes
Summary of
participant responses
Learning obtained
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Limitations
Limited participants
Unequal gender
distribution
Lack of cultural
diversity
Narrowed scope of
interview
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Credibility
Validated experiences
of healing through
prayer
Participants
experienced healing
Researchers
experienced lifealtering inspiration
Prayer enhances
spiritual phenomenon
and healing
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Approaches
Literature based study
Systematic approach
Key words
Broad data base for
literature search
Original research
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Findings
Key variables
Private prayer
Frequency of prayer
Religiosity
Demographics
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Limitations
Lacks a defined
Theoretical
Framework
No controlled trials
Limited effectiveness
of prayer
Evidence reliant on
methodological
approach
Sample bias
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Credibility
Evidence supports
association between
prayer and well-being
Active participation in
prayer leads to better
health
Private prayer
associated with
decreased depression
and anxiety
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Prayer is beneficial for health.
Young & Koopsen (2011) state, “Prayer can
profoundly affect the healing process.
Research demonstrates that religious practices
such as worship attendance and prayer may
contribute to physical and emotional health”
(p. 72).
Research has demonstrated that regular prayer,
scripture reading, or study provides health
benefits (Matthews, 2000).
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These might affect health evidence suggests that the
strongest impact of religion and spirituality on health
is its preventive effect in healthy people (Chida,
Steptoe, & Powell, 2009; Powell, Shahabi, & Thoresen,
2003), but religion/spirituality had also been shown to
be a coping resource in diseased patients (Powell et
al.).
Guthlin, Anton, Kruse, and Walach (2011) states, “Our
results support data that imply the existence of a
psychophysical pathway in healing through spiritual
rituals, and gave subjective insight into the perspective
of patients” (p. 328).
Conclusions and
Implications for
Practice (cont.)
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Research strongly
supports the use of
prayer as an
alternative therapy
for healing.
Limitations are
present but the
benefits heavily
outweigh the
weaknesses.
Prayer enhances
spiritual
phenomenon and
healing
Chida, Y., Steptoe, A., & Powell, L. H. (2009). Religiosity/spirituality and
mortality. A systematic quantitative review. Psychotherapy and
Psychosomatics, 78(2), 81-90. doi:10.1159/000190791
Güthlin, C., Anton, A., Kruse, J. and Walach, H. (2011). Subjective Concepts
of Chronically Ill Patients Using Distant Healing. Qualitative Health
Research, 22(3), 320–331. DOI: 10.1177/1049732311421914
Matthews, D. S. (2000). Prayer and spirituality. Rheumatic Diseases of
North American, 26(1), 177-187.
Powell, L. H., Shahabi, L., & Thoresen, C. E. (2003). Religion and
spirituality: Linkages to physical health. American Psychologist, 58(1), 3652. doi:10.1037/0003-066X.58.1.36
Taylor, E. J. (2002). Spiritual care. Upper Saddle River, NJ: Prentice Hall.
Young, C., & Koopsen, C. (2011). Spirituality, Health, and Healing: An
Integrative Approach (2nd ed.). San Diego, CA: Jones and Bartlett
Publishers.
Blaszko Helming, M., (2011). Healing Through
Prayer. Holistic Nursing Practice, 25(1), 33-44. doi:
10.1097/HNP.0b013e3181fe2697
Mary Blaszko Helming, PhD, FNP, AHN-BC, Department of Nursing,
Quinnipiac University, Hamden, Connecticut.
This qualitative study approached the topic of healing through prayer
amongst interviewed participants. The participants of the study were all
affiliated with Christian churches of several denominations. The research
focused on the participants experience with prayer and its influence on
their personal medical conditions. Their outcomes are discussed and the
aspects of prayer are applied to their degree of healing.
The study recognizes bias’s of the interview population in terms of
age, gender, demographics, and culture.
Hollywell, C., & Walker, J., (2008). Private prayer as a suitable
intervention for hospitalised patients: a critical review of the
literature. Journal of Clinical Nursing, 18, 637-651. doi: 10.1111/j.13652702.2008.02510.x
Clare Hollywell, BN, RN, staff Nurse and Missionary Nurse, Faculty
of Medicine, Health and Life Sciences, University of Southampton,
Southampton, UK.
Jan Walker, BSC, PhD, RN, RHV, C. Psychol, FHEA, Visiting Senior
Research Fellow, Faculty of Medicine, Health and Life Sciences, University
of Southampton, Southampton, UK
The focus of the research was to collect evidence supporting the use of
private prayer to improve the wellbeing for adult hospitalized patients.
The research was conducted through a review of literature following a
systematic approach. Limitations identified in the study were a lack of
experimental research, sample bias, and a theoretical framework model.
The study, intended for healthcare providers, identified evidence that
there is a positive association between prayer and wellbeing.
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