Freedom of conscience and religion of patients in the health service
human rights
City (headquarters):
Voivodeship (headquarters):
01-10-2021 - 31-05-2023
in progess
Project cost:
77 230,00 EUR
74 500,00 EUR
Types of activities:
educational activities, advocacy activities, watchdog activities
Target groups:
society, persons with medical conditions, health professionals

The project concerns measures to counteract discrimination on the grounds of religion and world view in the healthcare system in Poland. This problem primarily affects people in ethnic minorities and irreligious persons. Patients are unaware of their rights with respect to freedom of conscience and religion, while people working in healthcare are not culturally sensitive and aware that certain conduct and practices may be discriminatory. Religious practices in health service facilities, religious symbols in hospitals, and lack of cultural sensitivity when serving meals or performing medical procedures, etc. are just some examples.
Under the project, the Project Promoter will monitor the media and court rulings, and conduct a survey among 700 people in religious minorities on religion-based discrimination in medicine. The findings of the monitoring and survey, and recommendations for medical personnel, healthcare facility directors, operating bodies, the Ministry of Health, the Patient Ombudsman, and medical universities will be described in a report and presented at a conference. The Project Promoter will also produce two miniguides; one for physicians and medical personnel on equal treatment of patients regardless of religion, and one for patients on their rights with respect to freedom of conscience and religion. A mobile application and series of ten podcasts will be produced in the project, for medical personnel and medical students.
The measures are intended primarily for health service facilities and medical personnel. They will learn about compliance with laws on freedom of conscience and religion in medicine. The project is intended to benefit religious minorities and irreligious persons. Due to the publicity around the issue, the internal procedures in medical facilities and the way they function will be discussed and reviewed, and this will increase patient comfort.

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