Congregational Nurse Program
Our Congregational Nurse Program is a unique, specialized nursing practice established as a collaborative relationship between Cone Health and our area’s faith communities. This partnership recognizes that religious organizations have a long history of promoting healing and caregiving. We established our Congregational Nurse Program in 1998 with grants from the Cone Health Foundation.
Our approach provides for a congregational coordinator based at Cone Health who is responsible for assisting community congregations with developing and implementing a Health Ministry Program. Each health ministry is tailored to meet individual congregations’ needs and capabilities. Currently, we collaborate with 48 faith communities, all of which have either a paid or volunteer congregational nurse.
Roles and Activities
Our congregational nurses provide a range of services to their faith communities such as:
- Personal health counseling. While congregational nurses do not perform “hands-on” nursing care such as wound care or injections, they discuss health concerns with parishioners and visit with them as needed.
- Health education. Congregational nurses promote an understanding of the relationship between lifestyle, attitudes, faith and well-being.
- Referral assistance. Congregational nurses serve as a resource for area health resources and services for their faith community.
- Recruiting volunteers. As facilitators, they often recruit and coordinate volunteers and support groups within their congregations.
The role of congregational nurses is varied and includes:
- Assessing health needs for the faith community.
- Providing screening clinics.
- Making home, hospital or nursing home visits.
- Referring parishioners to appropriate health or social services agencies.
- Offering educational programs to address specific congregational needs.
- Coordinating volunteers for supportive ministries.
- Networking with other congregational nurses to increase knowledge.
Our objectives are to:
- Enhance the health status of people served by Cone Health through outreach.
- Promote harmony of body, mind and spirit in achieving and maintaining individual health with a focus on disease prevention and reducing health risk behaviors.
- Facilitate an active partnership between Cone Health, faith communities, agencies and the community at large to promote wellness, chronic disease management and healthier lifestyles.
Lay Health Coach Model
Our Lay Health Coach Model program trains non-clerical leaders to undertake wellness and disease prevention activities within their faith communities in conjunction with the Guilford County Health Department.
Both our Congregational Nurse Program and Lay Health Coach Model program strive to represent religious, ethnic and regional diversity.
For more information, call (336) 832-8602.