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Vatican official discusses challenges facing Catholic hospitals

Catholic World News - November 15, 2012

At a press conference in Rome that preceded a three-day conference of healthcare workers, the president of the Pontifical Council for Health Pastoral Care discussed the challenges facing Catholic hospitals around the world.

In wealthier nations, “serious challenges exist, beginning with the preservation of the identity of Catholic hospitals and other health centers, and the maintenance of their specific role of subsidiarity,” said Archbishop Zygmunt Zimowski.” Other “fundamental issues” include “full respect for life from conception to natural end; the humanization of healthcare, which means showing full respect for patients, their identity and life experiences; [and] palliative care.”

Archbishop Zimowski lamented the lack of access to basic healthcare in poorer nations: “people often die on account of a lack of basic medicines costing just a few dollars, as in the case of anti-malarial treatments,” he said.

Father Augusto Chendi, the pontifical council’s undersecretary, announced that in February, the council would publish some theological reflections for patients and their caregivers.

“Our intention in entrusting this manual to the Church, and to the world of healthcare, parishes and voluntary work, is to create a communion of grace, prayer and mutual charity,” he said.

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  • Posted by: Randal Mandock - Nov. 15, 2012 11:28 AM ET USA

    Atlanta's Catholic hospital told me earlier this year that they are "safe." They became "safe" by merging with another hospital that will presumably accept the women who demand abortions, abortifacients, contraceptives, as well as those who demand death "with dignity." I wonder if they will continue to care for those who cannot afford to pay their medical bills. This has been a hallmark of the Catholic healthcare establishment. And what about new "challenges" to Catholic adoption agencies, etc.?

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