The goal of Hospice is to provide care for people who are terminally ill and to manage their pain and other symptoms.

    There are specific criteria for Hospice eligibility for a variety of conditions, including:

    • ALS

    • Alzheimer's/Dementia

    • Cancer

    • Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease

    • Diabetes

    • Kidney (Renal) Disease

    • And Others...

  • Focus on the continuous, integrated health care process that a patient/family experience across all aspects of hospice care.

  • Incorporate outcome-orientated quality assessment and performance improvement.

  • Facilitate flexibility in how the Hospice meets performance expectations.

Job Description for Chaplain/Spiritual Pastoral Counselor

December 16, 2018

Job Summary

Provides direct spiritual/pastoral/bereavement support and/or counseling to patients/families, hospice staff, and volunteers as needed acknowledging and respecting their beliefs, culture and values related to life’s meaning including suffering and loss and a desire to receive support.

Job Qualifications

  • Graduate of an accredited seminary; or school of theology; or successfully completed four units of Clinical Pastoral Education (CPE), or equivalent clinical training and experience; or endorsed by and is in good standing with a denomination or a faith group that ordained and recognized the chaplain.
  • Provide a copy of a transcript from a school/college documenting religious studies and counseling.
  • Documented experience working with patients/families dealing with life limiting illnesses and death.
  • Clear record of conduct for any offense that would bar employment on criminal history, nurse aide registry, and employee misconduct registry.
  • Hospice or Home Health experience preferred.
  • Valid Drivers License.
  • Proof of current Automobile Liability Insurance.
  • Demonstrate ability to relate effectively with physicians, health care professionals, patients/families, the community, and members of the hospice interdisciplinary team.

Physical Requirements

  • Frequently required to stand, walk, reach with hand and arms, stoop, kneel, twist, and crouch.
  • Frequently required to walk and sit.
  • Regularly required to use hands to handle and feel and to speak and hear.
  • Occasionally lift and/or move up to 10 pounds.
  • Ability to deal effectively with stress.
  • Specific vision abilities required by this job include close, distance, color, peripheral, depth perception, and ability to focus.
  • Require ability to drive an automobile.

Working Conditions

  • Patient home settings, general office settings, inpatient care facility, health care offices/hospitals.
  • Exposure Risk Category II.

Organizational Standards

Customer Service and Relationship Building

Focuses efforts on discovering and meeting the needs of a diverse group of people, both internal and external customers, as well as the patients and families served by hospice.

Teamwork and Cooperation

Implies a genuine intention to work cooperatively with others, expresses positive expectations of others, shares all relevant or useful information on a timely basis.

Technical/Professional Quality

Demonstrates mastery of job-related knowledge and acts to keep skills and knowledge current.


Persistent, refuses to give up when faced with obstacles or rejection; takes action that will improve or enhance performance of job responsibilities.


Articulates clearly, the Mission, Vision, and Values of hospice, effectively communicates with direct and honest feedback in developing relationships with others.

Managing People

Provides constructive feedback to support the work and ideas of others.


Sets challenging goals for self and helps team members achieve goals set to meet hospice standards of excellence.

Essential Functions

  • Complete Spiritual/Pastoral assessment as related to terminal illness for all admissions according to policies and procedures.
  • Provide spiritual/pastoral support in accordance with the wishes and needs of the patient/family.
  • Participate in the development, update, and completion of the IDT plan of care.
  • Develop an individualized spiritual/pastoral plan of care which demonstrates an effort to work in close collaboration with local clergy whenever desired by the patient/family; and provide spiritual support as needed and defined by the patient/family.
  • Identify patient/family dynamics and communication patterns and support the patient/family involvement in the plan of care.
  • Responsible for conducting religious services of prayer, worship and rituals for patient/families as requested.
  • Ensure patients/families of different philosophies and religious beliefs are offered opportunities to discuss and share their thoughts, feelings, beliefs, and values.
  • Responsible for working with other professionals to assist in resolving spiritual/pastoral/ethical issues.
  • Document spiritual/pastoral counseling in the clinical and progress notes according to policy and procedure.
  • Participate in the QA/PI process and serve as a member of the QA/PI committee as needed.
  • Participate with IDT members and other professionals (as determined by hospice) using the team approach in evaluating the patient/family satisfaction and response to care.
  • Participate in the development of approaches to meet staff spiritual/pastoral counseling needs.
  • Provide bereavement support to staff as needed.
  • Provide support and ensure availability to families during the bereavement period as needed.
  • Assess special needs related to cultural diversity including communication role of family members and special traditions.
  • Provide support as requested to individual staff regarding personal spiritual/pastoral issues that may affect their ability to function effectively.
  • Participate in orientation and training of staff and volunteers regarding role of Chaplain/Spiritual Counselor when requested.
  • Participate in required in-services.
  • Maintain current level of skills and evidence of competency.
  • Adhere to all Confidentiality policies and procedures and maintain confidentiality of administrative information.
  • Perform other reasonable duties as assigned.

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HCCNJ - Hospice Comfort Care of New Jersey - (201) 437-7070 | Fax: (201) 437-7747
820 Broadway, Bayonne, NJ 07002