Complementary & Alternative Care

What is CAM?

Complementary and Alternative Medicine The National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine (NCCAM) defines CAM as: “a group of diverse medical and health care systems, practices, and products that are not generally considered part of conventional medicine”

(National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine website. www.nccam.hih.gov)

What is Complementary Medicine? consists of therapies that are used to complement/enhance conventional medicine

What is Alternative Medicine? consists of therapies that are used in place of conventional medicine

What is Integrative Medicine?

Integrative Medicine = “CAM” + conventional medicine “Healing-oriented medicine that takes account of the whole person (body, mind, and spirit), including all aspects of lifestyle. It emphasizes the therapeutic relationship and makes use of all appropriate therapies, both conventional and alternative.”

(Rakel, D. Integrative Medicine. Philadelphia: Suanders Elsevier, 2007)

  • Importance of weighing risks and benefits
  • What Integrative Medicine is NOT:
  • “Alternative” Medicine
  • NEVER encourages patients to abandon their conventional therapy
  • may use ‘alternative therapies’, but not without conventional medicine
  • A “cure”
  • Integrative medicine emphasizes difference between ‘healing’ and ‘cure’
  • Healing can take place in absence of cure

Why is Integrative Medicine important?

“approximately 38% of U.S. adults aged 18 years and over and approximately 12% of children use some for of CAM.”

(2007 Statistics on CAM use in the United States. www.nccam.nih.gov)

Isn’t Integrating CAM going to cost more money?

  • The Bravewell Collaborative report:
    The Efficacy and Cost-Effectiveness of Integrative Medicine
    Interesting facts in the report:
    • comprehensive lifestyle change program: 80% of participants able to safely avoid heart surgery or angioplasty, saving almost $30,000 per patient in the first year.
    • in 2005, corporations involved in a health and wellness program for employees experienced an average 26% reduction in health care costs.

(The Efficacy and Cost-Effectiveness of Integrative Medicine: A Review of the Medical and Corporate Literature. Bravewell Collaborative website. http://bravewell.org/content/IM_E_CE_Final.pdf)

If you are new to the Center, we invite you to schedule an appointment for an initial 30-minute consultation with one of our practitioners at the Center. The consultation is $30. The purpose of this meeting is to acquire your medical history information as well as to conduct an initial assessment of your specific mental, emotional, physical and spiritual needs. The practitioner will also provide you with information about the Center, our range of customized services and programs and available payment options, which include cash, check, Visa, Master Card, and Health Savings Account (HSA). Follow-up sessions can be scheduled to discuss specific treatment recommendations. Our practitioners are also available to confer with patient physicians on your behalf.

Complimentary medicine includes Accuncture, Ayurveda, Craniosacral Therapy, Emotional Counselling, Health Coaching, Stress Reduction Therapy, Yoga, Tai Yi, Meditation, Movement Therapy, Nutrition Counselling, Massage Treatment and Reflexology. There are good explanations of these treatments on the Progressive Health Center website. www.progressivehealthcenter.org