The increasing popularity of alternative treatments-methods of treatment that are not generally established in Western medicine-demands a serious debate about scientific documentation, efficacy and safety. It has been argued that there is no alternative medicine. There is only scientifically proven, evidence-based medicine supported by solid data, and we agree. Different methods of treatment, referred to as alternative treatments, are used by millions of patients every day which generates billions of dollars in health care expenditure each year.
In this note, Katherine A. White explores the conflict between religious health care providers who provide care in accordance with their religious beliefs and the patients who want access to medical care that these religious providers find objectionable. Specifically, she examines Roman Catholic health care institutions and HMOs that follow the Ethical and Religious Directives for Catholic Health Care Services and considers other religious providers with similar beliefs.