We recommend the following for healthcare providers taking a patient's spiritual history:
- Consider spirituality as a potentiality important component of every patient's physical well being and mental health.
- Address spirituality at each complete physical examination and continue addressing it at follow-up visits if appropriate. In patient care, spirituality is an ongoing issue.
- Respect a patient's privacy regarding spiritual beliefs; don't impose your beliefs on others.
- Make referrals to chaplains, spiritual directors, or community resources as appropriate.
- Be aware that your own spiritual beliefs will help you personally and will overflow in your encounters with those for whom you care to make the doctor-patient encounter a more humanistic one.