Evidence and clinical guidelines call care team members to address the spiritual well-being of pediatric patients, especially adolescents and young adults (AYA), with cancer and blood disorders. However, the lack of relevant training in generalist spiritual care has been a key barrier. Therefore, we aimed to improve clinicians’ capabilities by utilizing the Interprofessional Spiritual Care Education Curriculum (ISPEC) to close this gap in pediatric hematology-oncology. A model of interprofessional spiritual care entails that all team members attend to patients’ spirituality by employing generalist spiritual care skills and collaborating with spiritual care specialists such as chaplains.
Interdisciplinary team members providing care for AYA with cancer and blood disorders were recruited to participate in interprofessional spiritual care education. Our intervention combined an evidence-based online curriculum and in-person discussion groups. Pretest-posttest study examined changes in participants’ skills and practices to identify, address, and discuss spiritual concerns. Surveys were conducted at baseline and at 1, 3, and 6 months after the intervention.
Participants (n = 21) included physicians, advanced practice providers, nurse coordinators, and psychosocial team members. We observed positive changes in participants’ ability (36%, P < 0.01), frequency (56%, P = 0.01), confidence (32%, P < 0.01), and comfort (31%, P = 0.02) providing generalist spiritual care baseline versus one month, with significant gains maintained through six months (Omnibus P < 0.05).
Utilizing ISPEC, interprofessional spiritual care education has a strong potential to develop pediatric hematology-oncology team members’ capabilities to attend to the spiritual aspect of whole-person care and thus contribute to the well-being of AYA with cancer and blood disorders.

© 2021 The Authors. Pediatric Blood & Cancer published by Wiley Periodicals LLC.