New Code of Conduct for Healthcare Chaplains

09/02/2011

Health Minister Michael McGimpsey has officially launched a new Code of Conduct for Healthcare Chaplains in Northern Ireland.

The Code sets out the professional standards expected of over 150 chaplains who work in the Health and Social Care (HSC) system.

Speaking at the launch, the Minister said: "Chaplains working across our Health and Social Care system perform an extremely demanding job, often in very difficult circumstances. Every individual who uses our health services deserves to feel important and that their needs are being met. Every chaplain has something to contribute to the patient experience - that is why this Code is so important."

The Minister continued: "The Code gives clear guidance on the standards expected of our chaplains and the principles they should adhere to, including maintaining trust, keeping personal and professional boundaries and respecting confidentiality."

Commenting on the importance of multi-faith support and guidance across the HSC, the Minister said: "It is vital that spiritual services are delivered appropriately to patients and their families. One of the aims of this Code is to enable chaplaincy services to meet the needs of the increasingly multi-cultural and spiritually diverse society that continues to grow in Northern Ireland."

The Code was developed by the UK Board of Healthcare Chaplaincy and following a process of consultation, it has been adopted by the Northern Ireland Healthcare Chaplains Association.

A copy of the Code can be viewed on the DHSSPS website at http://www.dhsspsni.gov.uk/nihca-code_of-conduct.pdf