CHICAGO, April 10 -- A majority of physicians in a large survey declared that religion and spirituality, including divine intervention, affect their patients' health.
The survey of more than a thousand practicing physicians found that 56% believe religion and spirituality have a significant effect on health, researchers reported in the April 9 issue of the Archives of Internal Medicine.
It goes on:
Compared with those with low religiosity, highly religious physicians were substantially more likely to report that patients often mention spiritual issues (36% versus 11%; P<0.001).
They were also more likely to believe that religion and spirituality strongly influence health (82% versus 16%; P<0.001), and to interpret the influence of religion and spirituality in positive rather than negative ways, the researchers found.
These associations persisted in multivariate analyses that controlled for religious affiliation, region of practice, age, sex, ethnicity, and specialty.