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7 Bumps

S/o of the public bible question

I mentioned this in that question - about 6 years ago, a massive outbreak of MRSA in the UK led to an investigation, which determined one of the sources of contamination were the free Bibles in hospital rooms.  It turned political when the hospitals decided the easiest and cheapest solution was to ban them, rather than pay people to keep track of them and dispose of the "used" ones.  Other hospitals around the world have followed suit, either banning them or requiring people to take them home with them, whether they touched them or not.

Between the resources being used to print all those Bibles which must then be destroyed, and the potential infection spread from people forced to take one home who don't want it, so then drop it off at the local book donation or Goodwill, is the potential "good" from having all those free bibles lying around still outweighing the potential waste and infection they also offer?

Answer Question

Asked by NotPanicking at 2:19 PM on Mar. 25, 2011 in Religious Debate

Level 51 (421,174 Credits)
Answers (20)
  • Why can't the hospitals just throw the Bibles in an autoclave after a patient is done with a room?

    Answer by Dr.Donna at 2:22 PM on Mar. 25, 2011

  • A better solution would be to rip off the cover and recycle the pages Since the bibles are donated,it shouldn't have to be a big nuisance for the hospital to be constantly cleaning them

    They should just stop accepting them


    Answer by butterflyblue19 at 2:27 PM on Mar. 25, 2011

  • The hospitals I've been to don't offer a Bible unless you go to the Chapel rooms. IMHO I wouldn't want someone else's Bible in my room, especially if I didn't know what they had while they were in there. They should just buy the Bibles at the $1 places, save money and send those used ones to be either sterilized or trashed/burned (even though I hate the idea of a Bible being burned).

    Answer by shaysmommy5810 at 2:29 PM on Mar. 25, 2011

  • the bibles should have been handled like the other items. removed or sanitized/sterilized on a regular basis or removed. Just like Physicians neck ties, which also carried MRSA-they needed to be cleaned on a regular basis and in between contact between each patient. Some things slip through the cracks in a clinical setting, recently alcohol wipes were identified as the culprit for infections that killed patients. Until it was discovered, nobody thought the alcohol wipe was the source.
    If the hospital cannot keep the infective sources at bay, the bibles should be removed. If the donators cannot provide a clean one with each patient, the practice should be stopped.

    Answer by jewjewbee at 2:30 PM on Mar. 25, 2011

  • The hospital could keep them in the supply room and if a patient requests one, they get one. The patient can take it home and if they don't, the hospital can pitch it.

    Answer by MrsMWF at 2:31 PM on Mar. 25, 2011

  • The patient can take it home

    The problem is, even if the patient takes it home, it can still be contaminated, and they can still throw it in the Goodwill box. There aren't any cheap, easy ways to sterilize a book - it requires special materials, a lot of open space, and the knowledge to know it has to be done in the first place.

    Comment by NotPanicking (original poster) at 2:49 PM on Mar. 25, 2011

  • I seriously like the whole "print on demand" thing or at least smaller numbers and you need to order more then so be eat. We waste so much money and natural resources on things like this. If I want a bible I will go and buy one

    Answer by jujubean1979200 at 4:10 PM on Mar. 25, 2011

  • I guess whatever they do with other literature would be appropriate
    When my Dad was in the hospital recently there was a yellow pages, the Bible and some other literature in his night stand
    A lady with a book cart came around to see if he wanted to a book- I never thought to ask if they had been cleaned-

    As far as "is it worth it"- I am more of an action kind of person- if I had lots of money, I would probably donate a few to the book cart and spend the rest of the money on maybe a room for the families to regroup or vouchers for free meals for families waiting on a loved one-

    When a friends husband was in the hospital recently instead of flowers I brought a cooler with drinks, snacks and some reading material- she loved it because although not pretty is was very useful- I guess thats "how I roll" ;)

    Answer by soyousay at 4:24 PM on Mar. 25, 2011

  • If they can't do it safely, then the practice should be stopped or people should have to bring in their own Bible and/or OTHER sacred texts if they choose. If they can hand them out on demand (but not have them automatically in the room) and make people bring them home with them or dispose of them after their hospital stay, that would probably be safer and cost less overall if they want to continue the practice. Personally, I see no need to have them automatically there in the rooms. If it's that important to someone, they'll probably bring their own with them. I've known a couple people who always traveled with their Bible.

    Answer by pam19 at 4:29 PM on Mar. 25, 2011

  • I'm thinking if the Bible is that important to someone, they'll probably ask someone to bring them their own. I don't see why there should be one in every room if it is causing spreading of diseases. It's a waste of trees.

    Answer by Mrs.B3 at 6:01 PM on Mar. 25, 2011

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