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Czech Republic: Ministry of health officially recommends service of hospital chaplains to healthcare institutions

(Bratislava) – Ministry of Health of the Czech republic officially recommends to all healthcare institutions, mainly hospitals and hospices, to provide their patients and clients with the services of hospital chaplains. Recently published methodical instruction contains basic rules and requirements regarding the presence of chaplains in these institutions, which is highly appreciated by the Catholic Church. “I have a great hope in regard to planned establishment of a professional commission that should be in charge of the service of hospital chaplains”, says bishop Jan Baxant, president of the Council for healthcare working within the Czech Bishops’ conference. According to Dr. Michal Hrnciarik from the Association of Hospital Chaplains, there is still a range of concrete conditions to be settled like the type of employment or requirements on education of chaplains, but “it’s good that the work is under way and the impuls came from the Ministry”. The following steps of the Catholic Church will include building of the system of supervisions, special formation and recruitment of new hospital chaplains and their assistants to cover the needs, so that hospitals “can be seen as a place with the presence of God, friendly atmosphere, as well as open and respectful relations”.

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