Pastoral Care offers a professional chaplain presence throughout the clinical areas of Watauga Medical Center. Professional chaplains also are available by request at The Foley Center for Chestnut Ridge. Volunteer community clergy are available to patients at Cannon Memorial Hospital by request.
In addition to daily rounds and crisis intervention, trained clinical chaplains respond to requests from patients, families, and clinicians to provide support, bereavement care, spiritual assessments, religious rituals, and pastoral spiritual conversation consistent with the patient’s faith tradition and current needs. Professional chaplains are available 24 hours a day at Watauga Medical Center and The Foley Center at Chestnut Ridge.
The pastoral care staff maintains excellent relationships with community clergy and coordinates the ARHS partnership program called AppFaithHealth, which helps congregations and the healthcare system work together to create healthier communities. Other departmental activities include support groups, worship services and corporate rituals; provision of inspiration, music and interfaith literature; and staff education.
All three facilities maintain sacred space through a chapel available for personal prayer and meditation. Groups may schedule use of the chapel at Watauga Medical Center by contacting the director of pastoral care. Visitation by religious groups and distribution of literature also should be cleared through the department. Feel free to contact Melanie Childers, director of Pastoral Care, at (828) 266-1178, or call the hospital main number (828) 262-4100 to ask that the director or on-call chaplain be paged for you.
The pastoral care office at Watauga Medical Center is on the second floor of the medical center, between the Pain Clinic and the endoscopy suite. The department is open Monday through Friday from 7:30 am – 4:30 pm.