Spiritual Considerations Surrounding A Disaster

What spiritual considerations surrounding a disaster can arise for individuals, communities, and healthcare providers? Explain your answer in the context of a natural or manmade disaster. How can a community health nurse assist in the spiritual care of the individual, community, self, and colleagues?

Sample Approach

Disasters are disastrous events whose origins can be atmospheric or geological. Disasters can be artificial or natural. A study by Ronan et al. (2017) indicated a double rise in the number of persons suffering from disaster by 2050. Additionally, reports indicate a 400% rise in worldwide natural occurring disasters (Center for Research on the Epidemiology of Disasters, 2017). New Jersey state is not an exception in handling natural and manmade disasters. Even though the state experienced many natural calamities, such as wildfires, the massive and most traumatic natural disaster the state suffered from was superstorm Sandy (Newton, 2019).

The outcome of superstorm Sandy in New Jersey caused human suffering through morbidity, mortality, damage to properties such as habitats, and disruption of social surroundings. Besides, the disaster results in a lack of trust among community members, despair to an individual, and a sense of struggle among caregivers (Newton, 2019). Therefore, individuals, the community, and healthcare workers also require divine support to conquer the repercussions of any particular disaster event.

Spirituality is supposed to aid in rehabilitation after any traumatic event. However, in the aftermath of a disaster, the community’s and healthcare providers’ responses to spiritual issues may differ. For instance, Sandy’s superstorm changed New Jersey’s netizens physically, emotionally, psychologically, and spiritually. The trauma experienced resulted in spiritual dissatisfaction, thoughts of punishment from God, and interpersonal spirituality discontent. The mentioned divine coping is due to psychological trauma experienced from the disaster. (Ronan, 2017).

Secondly, some community members who survived the superstorm Sandy event incorporated their divine meaning into interpreting the disaster as a coping strategy. The community believed God was the author of the disaster by citing references from the bible stated by the prophets. However, other members viewed God as a punishing giver from a loving figure. Thirdly, for care providers, the divine aspect may be encountered when nursing hopeless and desperate disaster victims. The pain and grief caregivers witness from seeing traumatized victims may lead the healthcare workers to spiritual healing. Their beliefs are restored, and decisions made in the clinical practice are spiritually based (Newton, 2019 ).

How can a community health nurse assist in the spiritual care of the individual, community, self, and colleagues?

The community caregiver plays a crucial role in the spiritual field of an individual after a superstorm Sandy disaster occurrence that led to the loss of beloved ones. The nurse ensures the affected person greatly tolerates physical and emotional demands by reducing pain felt and eliminating any trigger to stress and any negative thoughts.

Therefore, the nurse lowers the risks of depression and suicidal thoughts for the victim of a fire outbreak. In addition, a community health nurse can assess a person’s understanding of spirituality by obtaining a spiritual history. This aids in compassionately providing individualized care, necessitating faster recovery (Zhou, 2018 r).

Community health nurse’s roles in the spiritual aspect of the community. Local health care providers ensure emotional care to community members. Spiritual care providers collaborate with mental health practitioners when caring for communities in disaster. Severely traumatized patients are at risk of post-traumatic stress disorder; thus, a need to refer the patients to mental health for adequate counseling and sufficient emotional care. Additionally, providing spiritual care to the community ignites vital capacities of resilience and hope. Finally, community health caregivers participate in planning, preparing, training, and mitigating spiritual components. Collaborating with the society’s faith elders, the nurses prepare the congregation and other society members for any disaster, forming a resilient community (Newton, 2019).

Roles of community caregivers in the spiritual aspect to self. The provision of spiritual care in a disaster can be a burdening experience. The caregivers experience compassion fatigue. Post-care processes for spiritual and emotional care providers are essential. Also, agencies dealing with disaster response take responsibility for developing healthy jobs and lifestyles to care for their healthcare providers in times of disaster (Ronan, 2017).


  • Newton, A., & McIntosh, D. (2019). Association of general religiousness and specific religious beliefs with coping appraisals in response to Hurricanes Katrina and Rita.
  • Mental Health, Religion & Culture, 12, 129 –146. doi:10.1080/13674670802380400 Ronan, K. R., & Johnston, D. M. (2017). Promoting community resilience in disasters:
  • The role of schools, youths, and families. New York, NY: Springer.
  • Zhou, L., Wu, X., Xu, Z., & Fujita, H. (2018). Emergency decision making for natural disasters: An overview. International journal of disaster risk reduction, 27, 567-576.


For this final week, the emphasis is on emergency preparedness and disaster management. As first responders, nurses must be prepared to respond to any actual or potential threat to persons or communities. In times of distress, nurses will provide for the physical, emotional, and spiritual needs of groups in transition. 

Until recently, when I heard disaster preparedness, I immediately thought of bioterrorism or something along that line. However, I know several of you live in areas that deal with natural disasters such as hurricanes, floods, tornados, or fires, so this information can be helpful to you. We are all going through an emergency with the coronavirus and how it affects people worldwide. Think about this as you are doing your reading this week.

Four items must be submitted this week. They include:

Community Teaching Experience Approval

  • If you taught your family, fill out the form, and in the signature area, type in the name of the oldest person you taught.

Clinical Practice Hours – Teaching Project Form

  • Download this form, fill in the dates you worked on the teaching project, type your name in the signature area, and submit it to the proper box.

Community Teaching Plan: Community Presentation

  • This is from your teaching project. Submit the PowerPoint, a brochure copy, or a picture of the poster you used in the teaching project. That is all that is required. If you are submitting a poster, make sure to include references either on the poster or in a separate submission with the poster.

Community Teaching Plan: Teaching Experience Paper

  • This paper talks about your teaching experience. You will want to look at the rubric to see what should be included in the paper. You will notice that some areas ask for the information you provided in your Teaching Proposal. You can (and should) use the information from the Proposal (the epidemiological rationale) in the Reflection paper as long as it contains enough information and details. 
  • Discuss what went well in your presentation and what you might do differently if you present this again. In this paper, it is alright to use the first person. A thesis statement and conclusion are required, along with references and citations.
  • Respond to this Announcement for 4 participation points. Explain that you have read and understood the information in the Announcement.