Religion, spirituality, and the practice of medicine

Daaleman, Timothy P. Religion, spirituality, and the practice of medicine. The Journal of the American Board of Family Practice, Sep-Oct 2004, 17(5):370-376. Author email: tim_daaleman@med.unc.edu. Abstract: http://www.jabfp.org/cgi/content/abstract/17/5/370?ct. Full text: http://www.jabfp.org/cgi/reprint/17/5/370.

Summary: Physicians are confronted with new information from the popular media, peer-reviewed journals, and their patients regarding the association of religious and spiritual factors with health outcomes. Although religion and spirituality have become more visible within health care, there are significant ethical issues raised when physicians incorporate these dimensions into their care. Incorporating spirituality responds to patient needs by offering beliefs, stories, and practices that facilitate the creation of a personally meaningful world in the face of illness, disability, or death.

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By Frances E. Kuo

Frances E. Kuo, Ph.D., coauthor of the study, says, "In each of 56 different comparisons, green outdoor activities received more positive ratings than did activities taking place in other settings, and this difference was significant or marginally significant in 54 of the 56 analyses."

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