The Pastor and Bioethics
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- Hanford, J. Pastoral Psychol (2006) 55: 175. doi:10.1007/s11089-006-0044-z
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This essay presents bioethics or ethics in health care as a challenge to pastors. Common professional struggles are experienced by pastoral and health professionals. Thus, first, we need to consider the meaning of being a professional especially as pastors. Second, pastors might explore at least four specific medical issues: namely physician-assisted death or euthanasia, complementary or alternative treatments, the exercise of consent to medical procedures by patients or parishioners and families, and the crucial need for the donation of vital organs to save lives. Embedded within all four issues, there is a significant religious concern which requires the pastor's expertise.