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Religions 2016, 7(1), 11; doi:10.3390/rel7010011

The Effect of Prayer on Patients’ Health: Systematic Literature Review

1
Ribeirão Preto College of Nursing—EERP-USP, University of São Paulo, São Paulo, Brazil
2
School of Nursing, Centre for Interdisciplinary Research in Health, Institute of Health Sciences, Universidade Católica Portuguesa, Palma de Cima, 1649-023 Lisboa, Portugal
These authors contributed equally to this work.
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editors: Fiona Timmins and Wilf McSherry
Received: 1 December 2015 / Revised: 5 January 2016 / Accepted: 12 January 2016 / Published: 21 January 2016
View Full-Text   |   Download PDF [391 KB, uploaded 21 January 2016]   |  

Abstract

There is increasing interest regarding prayer in healthcare. Prayer is an activity related to spirituality and religion. Positive outcomes have been identified regarding spirituality in health. This study aims to investigate the effects on patients’ health of using prayer. A systematic literature review was conducted in May 2015 and updated in November 2015. Electronic and international databases were searched and the inclusion criteria were based on PICOS: (Population) patients of any age and any clinical situation, (Intervention) all types of prayer, (Comparison) ordinary care, (Outcomes) any health change, (Study type) randomized clinical trials. Neither timeframe nor limitation in language were considered. A total of 92 papers were identified and 12 were included in the review. Prayer was considered a positive factor in seven studies, and several positive effects of prayer on health were identified: reducing the anxiety of mothers of children with cancer; reducing the level of concern of the participants who believe in a solution to their problem; and providing for the improved physical functioning of patients who believe in prayer. Prayer is a non-pharmacological intervention and resource, and should be included in the nursing holistic care aimed at patients’ well-being. View Full-Text
Keywords: faith healing; religion; health; clinical trial; randomized controlled trial faith healing; religion; health; clinical trial; randomized controlled trial
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

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MDPI and ACS Style

Simão, T.P.; Caldeira, S.; de Carvalho, E.C. The Effect of Prayer on Patients’ Health: Systematic Literature Review. Religions 2016, 7, 11.

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