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Assistant Chaplain

The Hillingdon Hospital NHS Foundation Trust
£40,701 to £48,054 per annum pro rata inc high cost area allowance
Closing date
26 Jun 2024

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Other Health Profession
Band 6
Contract Type
Part Time
The Hillingdon Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust provides healthcare across the London Borough of Hillingdon, and is a part of the North West London Integrated Care System.

Our Department of Pastoral and Spiritual Care supports a diverse community of patients, carers and staff. We are seeking to appoint an Assistant Chaplain who will work alongside the Head of Pastoral & Spiritual Care, Honorary Chaplains and team of volunteers to provide generic pastoral and spiritual support at the Hillingdon and Mount Vernon Hospitals.

Applicants must have a relevant professional qualification, and experience of providing pastoral and spiritual support, underpinned by relevant knowledge and understanding.

All chaplains within the team are required to work generically across the diversity of religious faiths and non-religious world views. Applicants who wish their role to additionally include religious support from a specific faith perspective will need to be endorsed by the relevant faith community.

A critical part of the role includes the recruitment, training and support of pastoral support volunteers. Candidates will therefore be required to show evidence of management or supervisory experience within a volunteering context, and knowledge and understanding of the principles of volunteer management.

Main duties of the job

To be responsible within the Trust for ensuring the effective spiritual and pastoral care of staff, patients, relatives and volunteers.

To support, develop and manage volunteers and staff in their role within the Trust.

To ensure that staff and volunteers work within all relevant internal Trust policies and that all appropriate legislation is complied with.

To work with the members of the local faith communities in relation to the specific provision of religious support.

About us

The Hillingdon Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust is the only acute Hospital in the London Borough of Hillingdon and offers a wide range of services including accident and emergency, inpatient care, day surgery, outpatient clinics and maternity services. The Trust's services at Mount Vernon Hospital include routine day surgery, delivered at a modern treatment centre, a minor injuries unit and outpatient clinics.

The safety and well-being of our patients and of our staff is paramount and we are making urgent improvements to address this - particularly in infection prevention and control. We are making progress and going forward by working in partnership with local GPs, charities,community services, academic partners, our local authority, neighbouring hospitals and the wider North West London Integrated care system, and ensuring that we listen and work in partnership with our local population. We are absolutely focused on ensuring that our hospitalsprovide high quality, safe and compassionate care, while drive forward the building of the new Hillingdon Hospital.

We have over 3,500 members of staff that are proud to care for nearly half a million people, with a vision to be an outstanding provider of healthcare through leading health and academic partnerships, transforming services, to provide the best care where needed.

Job description

Job responsibilities

Communication and Relationship Skills
  • To communicate clearly and empathically with patients, relatives/carers, and staff at all times
  • To establish and maintain relationships in challenging pastoral circumstances
  • To use developed communication and inter-personal skills to provide and receive complex information in particularly sensitive circumstances, e.g. following receipt of bad news where there may be barriers to understanding or acceptance
  • To provide appropriate spiritual, pastoral and religious care to the bereaved, with particular emphasis upon emergency care
  • To facilitate the provision of religious support to bereaved people as appropriate
  • To provide pastoral support to mothers experiencing consented or unexpected pregnancy loss ensuring the provision of the disposal of non-viable foetuses within an appropriate funeral ceremony.
Knowledge, Training and Experience
  • To assist and advise external partners, such as pastoral support practitioners and representatives of faith communities in the pastoral care of their people while in hospital and to receive information from them, always observing the rules of confidentiality by which every NHS employee is bound
  • To contribute to the development of spiritual healthcare in a multi-faith and multi-belief setting, and to be sensitive to and aware of the varying pastoral, spiritual, and religious needs of diverse ethnic groups, and to assist staff in responding to their needs
  • Adhere to the Code of Professional Conduct of the College of Health CareChaplains.
Analytical and Judgement Skills
  • To advise staff, patients or carers on pastoral, spiritual and multi-cultural issues
  • To provide support and supervision to members of multi-disciplinary teams engaged in pastoral and spiritual assessment and referral, so that this forms part of the continuum of care.
Planning and Organisational Skills
  • To plan and organise own workload
  • To facilitate the provision of religious services for patients, relatives/carers and staff as appropriate
  • To make provision for regular visiting within wards and departments
  • To officiate at funerals of patients as required, either at the request of family concerned or when the Trust has accepted the responsibility for organising the funeral.
Responsibility for Patient/Client Care
  • Provide specialised advice pastoral and spiritual support to patients andrelatives/carers in both the acute and mental health settings in the Team's care
  • To make provision for the complex spiritual, pastoral and religious needs of patients, relatives and staff, including those who are unable to remain in contact with their normal place of worship
  • To helppatients, relatives and staff articulate their pastoral, spiritual and religious needsand to identify resources to address them
  • To respondto the practical and existential needs arising from the impact of illness, death and dying on individuals and families
  • To visitpatients, relatives and staff in wards and departments regularly, and to give appropriate support to the seriously ill, the distressed and the dying as appropriate
  • To makereferrals to other professionals/local community faith leaders as appropriate
Responsibility for Policy/Service Development
  • To assist in providing a comprehensive Spiritual & Pastoral Care service to the Trust, including the provision of spiritual healthcare information
  • To share responsibility for the implementation of policy/service development within determined parameters
  • To implement pastoral and spiritual healthcare service policies and comment on the development of new policies
  • To maintain the quality of service required by the Trust as expressed through the relevant quality standards
  • To observe and implement the National Guidance set for the effective working of the Chaplaincy service
  • Tocontribute to the professional development of the Chaplaincy Team
  • To develop interests in specific areas of healthcare and to be deployed according to the team policy
  • To review own working practice in conjunction with line manager and topropose changes as appropriate.
Responsibility for Financial and Physical Resources
  • To be responsible for the handling of donations and small payments and formaintaining Chaplaincy supplies
  • Toresponsible, in collaboration with other staff, for ensuring that rooms set aside for reflection, prayer, and worship are suitably furnished and properly maintained and sustained
Responsibility for Human Resources
  • To work collaboratively with other members of the Pastoral and Spiritual Care Team
  • To be responsible for the selection, training, and supervision of appropriatelyauthorised pastoral support volunteers and students.
Responsibility for Information Resources
  • To keep a record of daily activities
  • To maintain a record of referrals and other work records as required for information purposes
  • To access the Cerner system in relation to the pastoral, spiritual and religious care of patients and relatives/carers.
Responsibility for Research and Development
  • To be responsible for undertaking surveys and audits necessary for own work and for research and development purposes.
Freedom to Act
  • To initiate and take responsibility for own work pattern within the parameters of national standards, Trust Policies for Human Resources, and Health & Safety
  • To attend appropriate meetings related to work, both within and outside the Trust
  • To be included in the Major Incident Plan.
Emotional Effort
  • To handle frequent exposure to highly distressing or emotional circumstances,such as those involved in supporting patients, relatives and staff following terminal illness and bereavement
  • To have a commitment to and a clear understanding of own professional and spiritual growth and development
  • To minister with integrity to others who have a different philosophy, belief and value system
  • To engage in consistent reflective practice
  • To providea strong patient focus throughout the course of the patient's care in hospital.
Working Conditions
  • To support parents through contact with stillborn, miscarried babies andbabies terminated for foetal abnormality
  • Toaccompany relatives in viewing of deceased patients as required
  • To handle occasional exposure to other unpleasant working conditions and occasional verbal aggression from patients or members of the public.

Interview date: Tuesday 9th July 2024

Person Specification

Person Spec


  • Ordained priest, minister, or pastoral carer in good standing with their ecclesiastical authority or authorised to practice by a particular faith tradition
  • Degree level in Theology or equivalent in priestly training
  • Evidence of ongoing personal and professional development
  • Knowledge of the role of hospital chaplaincy
  • Experience managing the patient and carer interface in the NHS or health related field
  • Proven experience of liturgical leadership in contexts of pastoral need and rites of passage
  • Knowledge of all aspects of spiritual care and how this is applied in diverse faith and cultural traditions
  • Experiencing of dealing with and liaising with staff at all levels within the NHS


  • Counselling qualification
  • Masters degree level education in healthcare or theology/religious studies
  • Experience of pastoral and spiritual care in mental health services
  • Experience of mediation
  • Ability to design and deliver effective training programmes

Employer details

Employer name

The Hillingdon Hospital NHS Foundation Trust


The Hillingdon Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust

Pield Heath Road



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