Connect with us

News and Views

Religious Beliefs Shape Health Care Attitudes Among US Muslims, Report Suggests

Published

ScienceDaily (Aug. 12, 2011) — The perceived role of God in illness and recovery is a primary influence upon the health care beliefs and behaviors of American Muslims, a first-of-its-kind study has discovered. Outreach and education efforts by the health care community can help address Muslim concerns and improve health care quality in this rapidly growing population, the report recommends.

The traditional Ramadan fasting occurring this month is but one of many facets of the Islamic faith that might influence a patient’s health behaviors. But few studies have comprehensively examined how religious beliefs and cultural attitudes across the different sub-communities within the American Muslim community shape a Muslim patient’s experience.

“The idea was to talk about the health care values of American Muslim patients and the challenges they face inside the health care system,” said Aasim Padela, MD, MS, assistant professor of medicine and director of the Initiative on Islam and Medicine at the University of Chicago. “The findings can guide us as we move forward on accommodating these patients and others.”

Keep supporting MuslimMatters for the sake of Allah

Alhamdulillah, we're at over 850 supporters. Help us get to 900 supporters this month. All it takes is a small gift from a reader like you to keep us going, for just $2 / month.

The Prophet (SAW) has taught us the best of deeds are those that done consistently, even if they are small. Click here to support MuslimMatters with a monthly donation of $2 per month. Set it and collect blessings from Allah (swt) for the khayr you're supporting without thinking about it.

For the report, “Meeting the Healthcare Needs of American Muslims,” researchers interviewed people who share Islamic faith from a variety of ethnic backgrounds to gauge how their faith influences behaviors and the cultural obstacles they face within the health care environment.

Muslims are one of the fastest-growing minorities in the United States, with an estimated 7 million Americans identifying as Muslim and more than 2,000 active mosques in the country according to the Council on American-Islamic Relations. Muslims also are the most diverse religious group in the United States, with contingents of Arab origin, of South Asian (predominantly Indian and Pakistani) origin, and African-Americans.

To assess the common health care values of this diverse religious community, Padela and colleagues conducted several focus groups in southeastern Michigan, home to one of the largest Muslim-American communities in the United States. More than 100 men and women participated in 13 focus groups organized through mosques chosen to represent each of the community’s ethnic backgrounds.

“We looked at American Muslims as a conglomerate and asked what was common,” Padela said. “We wanted to talk to each of these three large groups, which we know comprise the majority of American Muslims, and look at what’s similar in terms of health care challenges and beliefs. What we found as similar is something we can attribute to their faith.”

One significant area of overlap was in the assignment of responsibility to God for health, disease and healing. Illnesses ranging from influenza to cancer are attributed by many Muslim-Americans to the influence of God, with some describing illness as “a disease of fate.”

Though imams are often consulted by patients for advice during illness, Muslim chaplains are a rarity in the American health care system. Improving communication between hospitals and community imams would help Muslim patients address spiritual concerns during times of serious illness and educate imams on how to counsel their patients on medical issues, Padela said.

Other recommendations in the report for health care institutions included cultural sensitivity training for staff, providing halal food and prayer space for Muslim inpatients, and building partnerships with mosques to create health awareness campaigns targeting the community.

Read rest here

Keep supporting MuslimMatters for the sake of Allah

Alhamdulillah, we're at over 850 supporters. Help us get to 900 supporters this month. All it takes is a small gift from a reader like you to keep us going, for just $2 / month.

The Prophet (SAW) has taught us the best of deeds are those that done consistently, even if they are small. Click here to support MuslimMatters with a monthly donation of $2 per month. Set it and collect blessings from Allah (swt) for the khayr you're supporting without thinking about it.

Hena Zuberi is the Editor in Chief of Muslimmatters.org. She leads the DC office of the human rights organization, Justice For All, focusing on stopping the genocide of the Rohingya under Burma Task Force, advocacy for the Uighur people with the Save Uighur Campaign and Free Kashmir Action. She was a Staff Reporter at the Muslim Link newspaper which serves the DC Metro. Hena has worked as a television news reporter and producer for CNBC Asia and World Television News. Active in her SoCal community, Hena served as the Youth Director for the Unity Center. Using her experience with Youth, she conducts Growing Up With God workshops. hena.z@muslimmatters.org Follow her on Twitter @henazuberi.

1 Comment

1 Comment

  1. Khaled

    February 15, 2017 at 6:46 AM

    A good video with great advice on how to quit porn for good.

    http://onepathnetwork.com/ten-tips-to-quit-porn/

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

Trending