The State of Research on Faith Community Nursing in Public Health Interventions: Results from a Systematic Review

Aaron J. Kruse-Diehr, Min Jee Lee, Judy Shackelford, Fatoumata Saidou Hangadoumbo

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


Though faith community nurses (FCNs) serve many roles in churches and communities, little is known about their roles or effectiveness in public health interventions. This systematic review summarizes the literature on recent faith community nursing interventions, examining trends, evaluating rigor, and proposing future research directions. Articles were downloaded from PubMed and CINAHL, and 24 studies were included. Interventions addressed various health outcomes. The FCNs participated in research by recruiting participants, developing study measures, and implementing programs. Results reported mainly process evaluation and provided few outcomes. Better evaluation is needed to understand the effectiveness of FCNs in public health research.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1339-1374
Number of pages36
JournalJournal of Religion and Health
Issue number2
StatePublished - Apr 2021

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
Many studies examined in this report suffered from methodological shortcomings often related to study design or sampling method, though these limitations may have been related to (lack of) funding. Eleven of the 24 studies acknowledged some type of support, though only four were federally funded. The remaining funded projects received foundation or private support from sources such as a dissertation grant, a state health foundation, a hospital system, internal faculty funding, a Greek letter society, and Susan G. Komen for the Cure. Likely, these awards were relatively small in nature, thus limiting the scope of the research. Accordingly, many studies used methods of convenience to recruit participants, such as from church health fairs, potentially biasing the sample to include more health-conscious participants and thus limiting the generalizability of findings. Furthermore, few (n = 5) study designs included a control or comparison group, and in one of them, there was no discussion of differences between treatment and control groups (Monay et al. ).

Publisher Copyright:
© 2021, The Author(s), under exclusive licence to Springer Science+Business Media, LLC part of Springer Nature.


  • Faith community nursing
  • Parish nursing
  • Public health

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Nursing (all)
  • Religious studies


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