In 1988 Dr. Randolph Byrd and his colleagues started a study of 393 patients admitted to the San Francisco General Hospital Coronary Care Unit. In the experiment, born-again Christian volunteers

In 1988 Dr. Randolph Byrd and his colleagues started a study of 393 patients admitted to the San Francisco General Hospital Coronary Care Unit. In the experiment, born-again Christian volunteers were asked to pray daily for a patients rapid recovery and for prevention of complications and death.
None of the patients knew if he or she was being prayed for. None of the volunteers or patients knew each other. Byrd categorized how each patient fared in the hospital as “good,” “intermediate,” or “bad.” He determined that patients who had been prayed for fared a little better than those who had not. His was the first experiment that had documented statistically significant results that seemed to support the prediction that prayer might have beneficial effects for seriously ill patients.
His published results engendered a storm of criticism, mostly from scientists who cited bias in the experimental design. For instance, Byrd had categorized the patients after the experiment was over. Think about how bias might play a role in interpreting medical data. Why do you suppose the experiment generated a heated response from many in the scientific community

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