Almost half of the pediatric physicians surveyed at 13 elite U.S. hospitals see themselves as very or moderately spiritual or religious.
Researchers at Brandeis University in Waltham, Mass., and the University at Buffalo conclude these doctors are open to connecting with patients and their families but lack the professional training on how to do so.
The survey of 74 pediatric hematologists and oncologists at "honor roll hospitals" ranked by U.S. News & World Report found 47.3 percent described themselves as very or moderately spiritual and only 13.5 said they were not at all spiritual. However, only 40 percent thought their spiritual or religious beliefs had any influence on their interactions with families, patients and colleagues.
Thirty-one percent of those surveyed said they were raised Protestant; 25.7 percent Catholic; 25.7 Jewish, and 10.8 percent other.