Aims and objectives. The aim of this study was to compare the differences in spiritual health between depressed and non-depressed nurses.
Background. Previous studies have revealed that spirituality can buffer emotional pressure and maintain health, even in cases of depression. Nurses may have a tendency to develop depression; however, the relationship between depression and spirituality in nurses has been investigated only rarely.
Design. A correlational study.
Methods. The study was conducted using a convenience sample of 283 nurses who worked at a local hospital in northern Taiwan. We used a structured, self-administered questionnaire to obtain the data. This questionnaire included a spiritual health scale, the Beck Depression Inventory and personal data. The quantitative data were analysed using the t-test, one-way analysis of variance and logistic regression.
Results. All the participants were women, and 22·6% of the participants were ascertained to have depression. The non-depressed group had a higher average score for the different domains of the spiritual health scale than the depressed group. When personal and job-related variables were controlled, spirituality was a significant explanatory variable for depression.
Conclusions. The spiritual health of the non-depressed nurses was better than that of the depressed nurses. The result was consistent with the previous studies on other populations.
Relevance to clinical practice. The spiritual health and depression of nurses should be paid attention by nursing administrators. Spiritual promoting programme in preventing depression should be examined in future researches.