The Volunteer Chaplain Program
Sutter Medical Center, Sacramento
Chaplain Associates are trained chaplains working in a non-salaried capacity, carrying out the mission of Sutter Medical Center, Sacramento (SMCS) and Spiritual Care Services.
Chaplain Associates provide spiritual care services on a volunteer basis. Chaplain Associates are responsible for providing routine visits to hospital patients in assigned units at SMCS on a scheduled basis, and provide on-call spiritual care for emergency situations. Chaplain Associates provide patients, families, and staff with the spiritual and emotional support needed when dealing with critical illness.
Chaplain Associates may be assigned to specific units within the hospital and will make routine visits to patients. The expectation of service is approximately four hours a week. Chaplain Associates will respond to referrals received from other chaplains, hospital staff, patients, and family members on their units. Chaplain Associates will coordinate their service with the primary chaplain assigned to the clinical area. While on duty, Chaplain Associates will be available to respond to code situations and other emergent needs.
Chaplain Associates may attend the monthly staff meetings of the Spiritual Care Services department and attend selected presentations designed for CPE students as part of on-going training and education.
The Spiritual Care Services Director provides on-going quality monitoring and supervision with regard to the Chaplain Associate's provision of spiritual care and the required documentation. An evaluation of the Chaplain Associate is completed annually.
Prerequisites for the Chaplain Associate Position
Must complete one unit of CPE training at an accredited ACPE Center and an application form.
In addition, Chaplain Associates must have the:
- Ability to establish rapport with others through effective listening skills
- Ability to work as a team member and communicate relevant patient care information to appropriate health care staff
- Willingness to work with and meet the spiritual needs of people of all religious faith, age, gender, sexual orientation, race, and ethnic backgrounds
- Ability to deal with the stressful nature of hospital work
- Ability to discern opinions from facts in patient documentation
- "Age-Specific" competencies completed
- Be mobile within facilities
- Complete annual TB test and initial Background Check