Magazine article USA TODAY

Americans Mingling Alternative and Traditional Medical Services

Magazine article USA TODAY

Americans Mingling Alternative and Traditional Medical Services

Article excerpt

Complementary therapies--such as chiropractic, acupuncture, or meditation--are so interwoven in the fabric of American health care today that it no longer may be relevant to draw firm lines between complementary and conventional medicine, researchers have concluded after analyzing a nationwide survey conducted by the Stanford (Calif.) Center for Research in Disease Prevention (SCRDP). Results from the random telephone survey of 1,000 Americans disclosed that 69% of respondents had used some form of complementary and/or alternative medicine (CAM) in the past year. Respondents also had seen traditional M.D.s an average of four times yearly.

More than 56% said they believe their health plan should cover CAM. On average, respondents indicated they would be willing to spend an additional $15.41 per month for health insurance for services such as chiropractic, massage, or acupuncture. They said they use similar criteria for choosing their conventional and CAM practitioners, with "technical skills at diagnosis and treatment" rated as the most important for both types. …

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