Skip to main content

Table 5 How religion and spirituality influenced major decisions. Description of R&S influence is summarized from parent reports, unless otherwise stated. Themes are underlined

From: Exploring the vagueness of Religion & Spirituality in complex pediatric decision-making: a qualitative study

Major Decision Cases Represented Description of R&S Influence
Locus of Care 4 - Prayed about choosing a hospital.
- Received signs or heard God’s voice indicating a certain hospital.
- Blessings and signs confirmed these decisions.
- Expected to see miracles at certain hospitals.
- Required faith and trust in God to relocate during treatment for a higher level of care, or to transfer to a local hospital with a lower level of care.
- Knew God would be with them wherever they went, and would provide.
Treatment Initiation 4 - Prayed about initiating or choosing a treatment plan.
- Delayed initiation while praying and waiting for peace from God.
- Able to initiate high-risk treatment because God would be present.
Life-Sustaining Therapy (Continue vs. Withdraw) 8 - Continued therapy, maintaining hope and faith in God, or because it should be God’s decision.
- Clergy prohibited removal of endotracheal tube (per HCP).
- Withdrew therapy, reassured that God was in control, there is life after death, and the child is no longer suffering.