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Religions 2016, 7(8), 107; doi:10.3390/rel7080107

The NERSH International Collaboration on Values, Spirituality and Religion in Medicine: Development of Questionnaire, Description of Data Pool, and Overview of Pool Publications

1
Research Unit of General Practice, Institute of Public Health, University of Southern Denmark, Odense C 5000, Denmark
2
Department of Mental Health Kolding-Vejle, Vejle 7100, Denmark
3
Trent Center for Bioethics, Humanities, and History of Medicine, Duke University, Durham NC 27613, USA
4
Caritas Science and Christian Social Work, Faculty of Theology, Freiburg University, Freiburg im Breisgau 79098, Germany
5
Research Centre Spiritual Care, Department of Psychosomatic Medicine and Psychotherapy, The University Hospital Klinikum rechts der Isar, Langerstr. 3, Munich 81675, Germany
6
Munich School of Philosophy, Kaulbachstr. 31, Munich 80539, Germany
7
Department of Psychiatry, Columbia University Medical Center, New York, NY 10032, USA
8
Department of Medicine, Federal University of Juiz de Fora, Avenida Eugênio de Nascimento 
s/n-Aeroporto, Juiz de Fora 36038330, MG, Brazil
9
Harvard Divinity School, Harvard University, Cambridge, MA 02138, USA
10
AdiBhat Foundation, New Delhi 110048, India
11
Department of Psychiatry, Universitas Airlangga, Surabaya, East Java 60115, Indonesia
12
Medical Faculty, Ludwig Maximilian University of Munich, München 81377, Germany
13
Medical Faculty, University of Bern, Bern 3012, Switzerland
14
Research Institute for Spirituality and Health (RISH), Langenthal 4900, Switzerland
15
College of Medicine, King Saud University (KSU), Riyadh 11461, Saudi Arabia
16
Medical Faculty, University of Basel, Basel 4003, Switzerland
17
Institute of Integrative Medicine, Faculty of Medicine, Witten/Herdecke University, Gerhard-Kienle-Weg 4, Herdecke D-58313, Germany
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Paweł Marian Socha
Received: 18 May 2016 / Revised: 18 July 2016 / Accepted: 26 July 2016 / Published: 23 August 2016
View Full-Text   |   Download PDF [540 KB, uploaded 23 August 2016]   |  

Abstract

Modern healthcare research has only in recent years investigated the impact of health care workers’ religious and other moral values on medical practice, interaction with patients, and ethically complex decision-making. Thus far, no international data exist on the way such values vary across different countries. We therefore established the NERSH International Collaboration on Values in Medicine with datasets on physician religious characteristics and values based on the same survey instrument. The present article provides (a) an overview of the development of the original and optimized survey instruments, (b) an overview of the content of the NERSH data pool at this stage and (c) a brief review of insights gained from articles published with the questionnaire. The questionnaire was developed in 2002, after extensive pretesting in the United States and subsequently translated from English into other languages using forward-backward translations with Face Validations. In 2013, representatives of several national research groups came together and worked at optimizing the survey instrument for future use on the basis of the existing datasets. Research groups were identified through personal contacts with researchers requesting to use the instrument, as well as through two literature searches. Data were assembled in Stata and synchronized for their comparability using a matched intersection design based on the items in the original questionnaire. With a few optimizations and added modules appropriate for cultures more secular than that of the United States, the survey instrument holds promise as a tool for future comparative analyses. The pool at this stage consists of data from eleven studies conducted by research teams in nine different countries over six continents with responses from more than 6000 health professionals. Inspection of data between groups suggests large differences in religious and other moral values across nations and cultures, and that these values account for differences in health professional’s clinical practices. View Full-Text
Keywords: religion and health; spirituality; physician values; communication; medical ethics religion and health; spirituality; physician values; communication; medical ethics
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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

Hvidt, N.C.; Kappel Kørup, A.; Curlin, F.A.; Baumann, K.; Frick, E.; Søndergaard, J.; Nielsen, J.B.; dePont Christensen, R.; Lawrence, R.; Lucchetti, G.; Ramakrishnan, P.; Karimah, A.; Schulze, A.; Wermuth, I.; Schouten, E.; Hefti, R.; Lee, E.; AlYousefi, N.A.; Balslev van Randwijk, C.; Kuseyri, C.; Mukwayakala, T.; Wey, M.; Eglin, M.; Opsahl, T.; Büssing, A. The NERSH International Collaboration on Values, Spirituality and Religion in Medicine: Development of Questionnaire, Description of Data Pool, and Overview of Pool Publications. Religions 2016, 7, 107.

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