The 2013 Center for Health Care Ethics Edward J. Drummond Lecture will be held at 7:30 a.m. Friday, May 10, in Pitlyk Auditorium A in the Learning Resources Center.
Farr Curlin, M.D., will present "What Has Religion to Do with the Practice of Medicine?"
Although a series of patient-centered movements have brought attention to the influence of culture and religion on patient's experiences of illness, medicine has tended to think of clinicians as more or less interchangeable representatives of one biomedical profession. Clinicians are thought to be answerable to scientific data and unified standards and they are encouraged to resist the undue influence of their "personal values."
In this talk, Curlin will describe a series of studies that chart the influence of physicians' religious characteristics on their clinical practices. These studies, it turns out, find that physicians in the United States are as religious as patients, and their religious faith matters for their practices and their attitudes toward their work. Curlin will then provide a framework to make sense of these connections between faith and clinical practice, and to suggest that it should not be surprising to find that religious faith influences medicine so much. Finally, in light of these connections, he will consider what the profession of medicine might hope for from renewing and deepening its engagement with religious ideas and practices.