Practitioners of conventional medicine are reasonably proud of their accomplishments in their profession, most notably in diagnostic, pharmacological and surgical advances of today. Total reliance on the advances and technologies had led to the dismissal of CAM in their profession. But today, Complementary alternative medicines although not a part of the conventional medicines are now gaining its acceptance both by the public and Health care professionals including those other allied professionals of medicines.
Many of the health care professionals today are now recommending alternative and complementary medicines because of its effectiveness and other benefits. Acupuncture is one of the most comprehensive and used alternatives today. Research showed that acupuncture is proven to treat variety of conditions that conventional medicines are limited to. Treated conditions were osteoarthritis, chemotherapy induced nausea, asthma back pain, menstrual cycles, bladder instability, migraines and headache.
Studies on acupuncture also showed effectiveness in treating chronic pain and management of drug addiction in which most conventional medicines are limited in addressing it. Although Western medicines have its ways, by integrating conventional and CAM, it would provide patients a more optimized and individualized treatment plans for their specific conditions. This integration would recognize and rely upon the innate healing capacity of the human body and emphasizes the relationship of the health care provider and the patient in fostering the alternatives of their care.
In incorporating both conventional and CAM, integration has to be with basis. The bases of integration are evidences that prove the validity and efficacy of either conventional medicines or CAM. In addition to this, practitioners have to weigh both the risks and benefits of the therapy to be employed, regardless if it is conventional or CAM to be used; the practitioner will be able to provide a less invasive, less hassle and least costly interventions appropriate for the situation of the patient.
An advantage of this integration is the assertion that health and healing occurs more efficiently because all factors that influenced the person is addressed. The patient is viewed holistically and the quality of life is taken to account. No one can deny the existence of crisis with regards to the delivery and financing of the healthcare system. However, with the integration of conventional medicines and CAM for public, increases the chance of a better health delivery system because of the many alternatives that could be used in addressing the illness and problems that are limited to conventional medicines.
An integrative approach to public health would provide a better chance of access to health services and more alternatives in health. With CAM, more choices will be open for public in their decision of addressing health, health care providers would have alternatives in order to compensate in areas that conventional medicine cannot work alone. This would help alleviate the burden of increasing chronic illness in association to the aging population. Essential to integration also is the therapeutic relationship of health care providers to the public.
Health care providers need to recognize that they are not the source of healing but it is the patient, by means of discovering their natural ability to regain health. Therapeutic approach, whether conventional or complementary, are simply an addition to this course. Patients must take their own responsibility in their own health and well being, but it is the health care providers that would ensure that you are getting the appropriate health services in adjunct to welfare of keeping up with the different trends and practices that would benefit the public’s health.
With this, each therapeutic decision should be made in consideration to all appropriate modalities, whether it maybe the use of conventional medicine, CAM or both. In doing so, patients are hence active partners in choosing whatever treatment, therapies or health care services that is reliable on their beliefs, values and practices.
The Use of Complementary and Alternative Medicine in the United States. May 2007. The National Center For Complementary and Alternative Medicines. 27 May 2008 < http://nccam. nih. gov/news/camsurvey_fs1. htm>