“Child Fatalities from Religion-Motivated Medical Neglect”
Asser, Seth and Rita Swan. “Child Fatalities from Religion-Motivated Medical Neglect.” Pediatrics 101, no. 4 (1998): 625–29.
The stated objective in this article by Asser and Swan was to “evaluate deaths of children from families in which faith healing was practiced in lieu of medical care and to determine if such deaths were preventable” (625a). Asser and Swan studied death records from 1975 through 1995, but they dismissed published accounts of “organic and functional diseases … healed by soliciting divine power” (625a) for children in Christian Science as “not [having] been confirmed by scientifically valid measures” (625a). Of the death cases they studied, comparisons were made from clinical experience and published statistics based on “a likely outcome with commonly available remedial or preventive medically supervised care” (626a). They concluded that “when[ever] faith healing is used to the exclusion of medical treatment, the number of preventable child fatalities are substantial and warrant public concern” (625a).
Print ISSN: 0031-4005
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