Religious People Fight Against Death the Hardest: Study

by K-Berens

In another survey of 1006 members of the general public, 57.4% believed that God could heal a patient even if physicians had pronounced further medical efforts to be futile.

A study conducted with 345 terminal cancer patients in the US followed their behavioural patterns up until death, and determined that religious patients who engaged in regular prayer were more than three times as likely to encourage doctors to do everything they could in order to keep them alive than those who were not religious.

According to the study, “Religious coping can offer patients a sense of meaning, comfort, control and personal growth while facing life-threatening illness”.

The study, originally published in the Journal of the American Medical Association, included a survey of patients and reported that over 30% of them agreed that the most important thing that acts as a motivator is religion.

Research was conducted from the Dana-Faber Cancer Institute, and it was concluded that people belonging to the 30% were not as likely to have signed a Do Not Resuscitate form, leaving doctors to make every attempt to keep the patient alive.

In addition to being resuscitated, these patients were also reported to be more probable to want mechanical ventilation.

Studies also show that keeping a patient alive on the brink of death can potentially cut down on a patient’s quality of life and may make the transition to death a harder experience.

“Because aggressive end-of-life cancer care has been associated with a poor quality of death and caregiver bereavement adjustment, intensive end-of-life care might represent a negative outcome for religious copers,” the researchers reported.

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