Pastoral Care: A Vital Part of WMHS
The Pastoral Care team is an important component of the perfect circle of patient care. They provide spiritual support to patients from all walks of life, religions and faith groups.
Another important aspect of their work is listening to patients and their family members as they express the emotions they are feeling. In times of stress, their calming presence can help individuals cope more effectively.
The team at WMHS includes two full-time, board-certified chaplains; chaplain associates (both area clergy and lay persons) and prayer partners.
Some interesting information about WMHS Pastoral Care Services:
Available Around the Clock. There is always a chaplain on call to respond to patients and their families 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
Both of our full-time chaplains are certified by the Board of Chaplaincy Certification. This means they have had extensive training in clinical settings that enhances the effectiveness of their ministry when working as part of the healthcare team.
Home Care and Hospice Patients. Pastoral care services also are available for persons receiving home care or hospice services. The support a chaplain provides during these home visits can be very beneficial for patients and their families who are dealing with serious illness or end-of-life issues.
Chaplains Charles Shelquist and Hans
Killius, Director of WMHS Pastoral Care
Prayer Partners. These volunteers make rounds throughout the hospital to say a prayer with patients and their families or simply listen. Those coming to the Same Day Surgery area, as well as the Schwab Family Cancer Center, especially appreciate their prayers and reassurance. For more information about volunteering as a prayer partner, please call WMHS Pastoral Care at 240-964-8292.
Service of Remembrance. Several times a year, the Pastoral Care Department hosts a special evening service to remember and celebrate the lives of those who died while they were a patient at the Western Maryland Regional Medical Center. The patients’ loved ones are invited and often are comforted by these observances.