Bad Faith: When Religious Belief Undermines Modern Medicine by Paul OffitBad Faith: When Religious Belief Undermines Modern Medicine by Paul Offit

Bad Faith: When Religious Belief Undermines Modern Medicine

byPaul Offit

Hardcover | March 10, 2015

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In recent years, there have been major outbreaks of whooping cough among children in California, mumps in New York, and measles in Ohio's Amish country#151;despite the fact that these are all vaccine-preventable diseases. Although America is the most medically advanced place in the world, many people disregard modern medicine in favor of using their faith to fight life threatening illnesses. Christian Scientists pray for healing instead of going to the doctor, Jehovah's Witnesses refuse blood transfusions, and ultra-Orthodox Jewish mohels spread herpes by using a primitive ritual to clean the wound. Tragically, children suffer and die every year from treatable diseases, and in most states it is legal for parents to deny their children care for religious reasons. In twenty-first century America, how could this be happening?

InBad Faith, acclaimed physician and author Dr. Paul Offit gives readers a never-before-seen look into the minds of those who choose to medically martyr themselves, or their children, in the name of religion. Offit chronicles the stories of these faithful and their children, whose devastating experiences highlight the tangled relationship between religion and medicine in America. Religious or not, this issue reaches everyone#151;whether you are seeking treatment at a Catholic hospital or trying to keep your kids safe from diseases spread by their unvaccinated peers.

Replete with vivid storytelling and complex, compelling characters,Bad Faithmakes a strenuous case that denying medicine to children in the name of religion isn't just unwise and immoral, but a rejection of the very best aspects of what belief itself has to offer.
Paul A. Offit, MD, is a Professor of Pediatrics in the Division of Infectious Diseases at the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine and Director of the Vaccine Education Center at the Children's Hospital of Philadelphia. The author of several books, he lives in Bala Cynwyd, Pennsylvania.
Title:Bad Faith: When Religious Belief Undermines Modern MedicineFormat:HardcoverDimensions:272 pages, 9.5 × 6.5 × 1 inPublished:March 10, 2015Publisher:Basic BooksLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0465082963

ISBN - 13:9780465082964

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Table of Contents

Introduction: At the Crossroads

1. “The Very Worst Thing”
2. A Fragile Magic
3. A Vengeful God
4. The Faith Healer Next Door
5. The Literal and the Damned
6. Dialogue of the Deaf
7. Do Unto Others
8. Ungodly Acts
9. The Miracle Business
10. The Peculiar People
11. The Divine Whisperer
12. Standing Up

Epilogue: “The Frail Web of Understanding”

Editorial Reviews

“Honest and fair, Bad Faith fails to leave any stone unturned—whether it be why faith-healing groups continue to promote these practices or roots of the religious theories against modern science. Regardless of your faith, this is a fabulous book that's well worth the read.”—Philadelphia Inquirer“Using actual case histories to illustrate the needless suffering and deaths that occur as a result of these methods, Offit masterfully points out that the denial of medicine in the name of religion actually rejects the basic teaching of religious faith: relieving suffering, providing hope, and treating others as one would wish to be treated. An excellent book with an important message that belongs in all library collections.—Library Journal (starred review)“A clear-eyed, sometimes terrifying look at how religious belief has been used, both historically and in contemporary contexts, to undermine modern medicine.”—Kirkus Reviews (feature interview)“A must read for anyone who seeks to understand the tangled relationship between religion and medicine in America.”—Shot of Prevention“This book should be read by anyone who deals with children, parents, medicine, or religionRead the book. Make up your own mind about the religious aspect of it. But get the kids to the doctor.”—Skeptic Ink