Meeting spiritual needs: What is an oncologist to do?

Betty Ferrell

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

28 Scopus citations


Meeting the spiritual needs of patients with cancer is an overwhelming challenge. The mandate to improve spiritual care is echoed by the study findings reported in this article published in the Journal of Clinical Oncology that 88% of cancer patients report that this topic is at least somewhat important and frequently of extreme importance. Oncologists play an important role in addressing spiritual and religious concerns. The recommendations in this article regarding spiritual assessment and advocacy are vital first steps. Involvement of oncologists in spiritual assessment and advocacy for spiritual care is symbolic of a larger goal. The oncologist who dares to ask about spirituality imparts a vital message to the patient that they are being cared for by someone who has not forgotten that a broken patient remains a whole person and that healing transcends survival.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)467-468
Number of pages2
JournalJournal of Clinical Oncology
Issue number5
StatePublished - Feb 10 2007

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology
  • Cancer Research


Dive into the research topics of 'Meeting spiritual needs: What is an oncologist to do?'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this