Patients don't factor in hospital's religious affiliation when choosing care, study shows

Patients do not place great value on a healthcare organization's religious affiliation when deciding where to receive care, according to a study published in JAMA Network Open.

Researchers examined responses to a population-based survey that polled 1,446 U.S. adults. They surveyed the participants via the internet or telephone over a three-day period in November 2017.

Most respondents (62.6 percent) were white, and the most common religion was Protestant (28.2 percent).

Only 6.4 percent reported they considered religious affiliation when selecting a healthcare facility.

A majority (71.3 percent) said they did not care whether a healthcare organization was religiously affiliated, while 13.4 percent preferred a religious affiliation, and 15.3 percent preferred no religious affiliation.

A little over 71 percent said they believed that their health choices should take priority over an institution's religious affiliation in services offered. This view was more common among women (74.9 percent) than men (68.1 percent).

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