Religion and United States physicians' opinions and self-predicted practices concerning artificial nutrition and hydration.
This study surveyed 1,156 practicing US physicians to examine the relationship between physicians' religious characteristics and their approaches to artificial nutrition and hydration (ANH). Forty percent of physicians believed that unless a patient is imminently dying, the patient should always receive nutrition and fluids; 75 % believed that it is ethically permissible for doctors to withdraw ANH. The least religious physicians were less likely to oppose withholding or withdrawing ANH. Compared to non-evangelical Protestant physicians, Jews and Muslims were significantly more likely to oppose withholding ANH, and Muslims were significantly more likely to oppose withdrawing ANH.
Wolenberg, KM; Yoon, JD; Rasinski, KA; Curlin, FA
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