Interdisciplinary relationships between chaplains and social workers in health care settings

J Health Care Chaplain. 2009;16(1-2):13-23. doi: 10.1080/08854720903451048.


As professional members of interdisciplinary teams in health care settings, chaplains and social workers must be prepared to interface with each other in a competent manner and to work cooperatively in caring for the needs of patients and their families. This article shares the results of a combined qualitative and quantitative research study (N = 403) that focused on determining chaplains' perceptions of their professional collaborative relationships with social workers. The findings indicate that chaplains have an overall positive perception of their interdisciplinary relationships with social workers. However, the results suggest areas that should be addressed in order to maintain and improve their functioning as colleagues who each play a critical role in providing holistic treatment.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Attitude of Health Personnel
  • Chaplaincy Service, Hospital* / organization & administration
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Interdisciplinary Communication*
  • Interprofessional Relations
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Patient Care Team
  • Social Work* / organization & administration
  • Workforce