Tuesday, July 19, 2011
The Parish Nurse
The first new program created at the Western Maryland Health System in 1996 was the Parish Nurse Program. In 15 years, the program has grown to 89 parish nurses and 11 health ministers serving 60 churches in our area. There had been more churches a few years ago, but due to consolidations in the Catholic Parishes and Methodist Churches, there are fewer churches today. Nevertheless, these nurses and health ministers are touching so many lives and encouraging parishioners to live a healthier lifestyle. They promote wellness of the mind, body and spirit not only on Sundays, but every day of the week. They do monthly blood pressure checks, maintain healthy lifestyle bulletin boards at the churches, visit hospitalized parishioners, sponsor blood drives, share health resources, support local and global causes, perform global ministry, hold health fairs, perform funeral home visits, teach/explain/educate and the list goes on. These are special people performing special work.