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Moral Injury, Chaplaincy and Mental Health Provider Approaches to Intervention: A Scoping Review.

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posted on 2022-09-26, 01:26 authored by Kimberly A Jones, Isabella Freijah, Lindsay CareyLindsay Carey, R Nicholas Carleton, Peter Devenish-Meares, Lisa Dell, Sara Rodrigues, Kelsey Madden, Lucinda Johnson, Fardous Hosseiny, Andrea J Phelps
The aim of this research was to describe the evidence examining the approaches taken by mental health providers (MHPs) and chaplains to address symptoms related to moral injury (MI) or exposure to potentially morally injurious events (PMIEs). This research also considers the implications for a holistic approach to address symptoms related to MI that combines mental health and chaplaincy work. A scoping review of literature was conducted using Medline, PsycINFO, Embase, Central Register of Controlled Trials, Proquest, Philosphers Index, CINAHL, SocINDEX, Academic Search Complete, Web of Science and Scopus databases using search terms related to MI and chaplaincy approaches or psychological approaches to MI. The search identified 35 eligible studies: 26 quantitative studies and nine qualitative studies. Most quantitative studies (n = 33) were conducted in military samples. The studies examined interventions delivered by chaplains (n = 5), MHPs (n = 23) and combined approaches (n = 7). Most studies used symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and/or depression as primary outcomes. Various approaches to addressing MI have been reported in the literature, including MHP, chaplaincy and combined approaches, however, there is currently limited evidence to support the effectiveness of any approach. There is a need for high quality empirical studies assessing the effectiveness of interventions designed to address MI-related symptoms. Outcome measures should include the breadth of psychosocial and spiritual impacts of MI if we are to establish the benefits of MHP and chaplaincy approaches and the potential incremental value of combining both approaches into a holistic model of care.


Open Access funding enabled and organized by CAUL and its Member Institutions. This work was funded by the Canadian Center of Excellence on Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) and Related Mental Health Conditions.


Publication Date



Journal of Religion and Health






43p. (p. 1051-1094)


Springer Nature



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