Catholic hospitals are a large part of the U.S. healthcare system, but they limit reproductive health and end-of-life care well beyond what many patients and providers may expect. With the spread of Catholic hospitals, limits are becoming more serious for patients and providers and the potential for discriminatory health practices has increased. As Catholic hospitals continue to market themselves to new patients, safeguards must be implemented to protect patients from being deceived and denied the appropriate standard of care.
Catholic hospitals are a large part of the U.S. healthcare system, but they limit the care they provide based on religious directives. This issue brief is an overview of the barriers patients face when seeking care and the challenges doctors have to providing care in Catholic hospitals.