Author Samples (2011) illustrates understanding of the Christian concept of imago dei as the image of God. However, it can be best explained in Genesis 1:26
Author Samples (2011) illustrates understanding of the Christian concept of imago dei as the image of God. However, it can be best explained in Genesis 1:26: Then God said, “Let us make humankind in our image, per our likeness; and let them have dominion over the ﬁsh of the sea, and over the birds of the air, and over the cattle, and over all the wild animals of the earth, and over every creeping thing that creeps upon the earth.” (Shelly & Miller, 2006, p. 77). This verse explains the concept in which human beings are made in the image of God to not just control everything and every animal on the planet, but rather so much more. Humans are to exemplify the values, beliefs, compassion, caring, and love that their creator has shown. As the text states, the best way to do this is mimic the behaviours of Jesus, the son of God, remembering he was not just human (man) but also spiritual in every sense. He cared for ALL things, including humans with unconditional love and compassion.
The Christian way believes every human being has imago dei and as such, is good and caring, providing “care for the poor, the sick and the disenfranchised regardless of social, financial, political or physical standings (Shelly & Miller, 2006, p. 76). This concept is so very important to healthcare as health providers’ personal views and beliefs in human beings is vital to how they will treat and care for them. If health providers see humans as bad and flawed, as is the usual standing, care and treatment could, and possibly will reflect that belief and thus there will be reasons for subpar care or none. This is relevant because caring for each other, especially when a nurse or doctor, is the core of being a human being. We as nurses identify and address inequalities and injustices that have the potential to impact health through critical awareness of and reflection on the social, cultural and political status quo (Chinn & Kramer, 2011)
Having unconditional care and compassion for everyone whom is in need is even more critical when you are in the healthcare system. “The Christian understanding of the person is that we are physically, psychosocially and spiritually integrated moral beings, created in God’s image to live in relationship with God and others and as responsible stewards of the environment. If nurses lose sight of this understanding of human worth and human life, our profession will cease to exist, for there will no longer be any reason to provide nursing care” (Shelly & Miller, 2006, p. 79).
I say all this as in my day to day care as well as other nurses, we tend to see the type of situation where people are not treated equally daily. However, with my upbringing of two leaders, a dad whom was a professor and then turned Pastor, and my mother whom is still practicing in the nursing field, I can’t help but to treat everyone with the same respect just as I would want to be treated if I were in the hospital or anywhere. It is very unfortunate that many people don’t have people to speak up for them when they are hospitalized, they are alone with no one to voice their concerns, etc. In many cases nurses have a very high nurse to patient ratio which enables the nurse to spend the proper time with the patient to make sure all their needs and concerns are addressed properly. We try our best to make sure that all patients are cared for and that their concerns and needs are addressed within the proper manner. Health care has changed over the years. It seems to me that many hospitals don’t care about what the patient thinks. They are more concerned with the revenue they will receive from the services. Therefore, we must always be advocates for those who are unable to do so for themselves. We let our patients know each day that they have a voice and they are in charge of their care. I lead the interdisciplinary team rounds every morning to address their plan of care and needs. This team is comprised of myself the nurse leader, their assigned RN, Internal MD, pharmacist, and case management and have proven to be successful for about a year now that we have started the process.
Chinn, P.L. & Kramer, M.K. (2011). Integrated theory and knowledge development in nursing (8th ed.). St. Louis, MO: Elsevier.
Samples, K. (2011). Imago Dei: What does it mean? Retrieved from http://www.reasons.org/articles/imago-dei-what-does-it-mean
Shelly, J. A., & Miller, A. B. (2006). Called to care: A Christian worldview for nursing (2nd ed., Rev. and expanded.). Downers Grove, Ill.: IVP Academic/Intervarsity Press. Retrieved from https://viewer.gcu.edu/UGPTQ4