Black and Hispanic patients are more likely than whites who are Catholic or Protestant to ask that health care providers take all possible steps to prevent death, according to a survey from the Pew Research Center. North Carolina State University professor and medical sociologist Karen Bullock said beliefs about religion and family can't be disentangled from medical decision-making. Older patients who lived through segregation may be less likely to trust medical professionals and more likely to insist on aggressive care, Bullock said.

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