Catholic hospital - page 2

There is a Catholic hospital that I would really like to work at in the future. I am not Catholic, nor have I ever attended a Catholic school in my past. I did a semester of my clinical rotation at... Read More

  1. by   HouTx
    I am a non-Catholic, happily working for a Catholic healthcare organization for a long time. We absolutely do not discriminate based on religious beliefs - for employees, patients or anyone. In fact, we have a huge emphasis on positive diversity in order to ensure culturally appropriate care & a major part of it is having a workforce that understands and 'looks like' the people we serve. However, anyone working for the organization must adhere to the 'rules' that guide Catholic healthcare. These are spelled out in a document called "Ethical and Religious Directives for Catholic Health Care Services" you can see a pdf copy of it here The primary differences are related to care at the beginning and end of life. There are a lot of myths out there - so it's best just to look at the source document.

    In the United States, Catholic healthcare was the basis of public health... long before any other type of safety net existed, the early nuns established hospitals in some of the most 'inhospitable' locations. If you'd like to find out more about this movement, you may want to read a book called "Say Little, Do Much: Nursing, Nuns, and Hospitals in the Nineteenth Century" by Sioban Nelson. The book is pretty entertaining. Those ladies were a feisty bunch that didn't take a lot of **** from anyone!!!
  2. by   Patti_RN
    Well put, HouTx. I've been affiliated with Catholic Charities and diversity is a large part of their mission. The OP asked if she should include her support of the Catholic church in her cover letter. That seems not only unnecessary, but presumptuous and contrived. She remarked that many of those employed by this Catholic hospital are Catholic and wondered if there is some preference given to Catholics.

    The answer to this specific question lies in the philosophy of that particular hospital and their preferences in hiring. Some Catholic hospitals and organizations appear to give an edge or preference to practicing Catholics. It's evident in the percentages of employees who are Catholic vs. non-Catholic compared to the regional at-large population. This could be any of several reasons: networking (if an applicant is known to the hospital through association with a church, or has a reference from a well-known priest), the applicant's personal mission aligns with that of the organization (as evidenced by their work/ volunteer history), or a desire to promote their ministry.

    Whether each individual hospital, school, church, clinic or or other religion-based organization DOES discriminate based on religion or whether they are legally allowed to do so are two different questions. The answer to the former lies within the hiring practices of the overall organization, the specific institution where the applicant wants employment, and the opinion and preferences of the individual who is making the decision in that instance. The answer to the latter is, yes, a religious organization is exempt from anti-discrimination laws when selecting or dismissing an employee in any capacity that involves ministry or the direct mission of the organization.