Role of Religiosity in the Lives of the Low-Income Population: A Comprehensive Review of the Evidence. Organizational Participation


At the organizational level, religious institutions can address health issues both formally, through sermons, prayers for members health issues, health education, screening programs, individual counseling, and emergency services, and informally, through peer groups. Participants can recommend doctors or screening programs to each other. Religious institutions can offer forums in which health issues can be discussed among religious leadership and worshippers. Specific health practices can be enforced by social networks and norms. Prevention education and screening programs can be offered to worshippers. At times, these programs are extended to include the broader community. Research is beginning to examine how religious institutions address health issues and to evaluate their health education and promotion programs that may or may not contain any religious content (Johnson et al., 2002). Similarly, at a very practical level, the empirical research literature is beginning to gauge the effectiveness of some everyday practices, such pastoral counseling in hospitals and health clinics that are relevant to patients religious preferences.

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