There was an article on the Washington Post’s website today about how more Americans are trying alternative/integrative medicine and how hospitals are trying to capitalize on that interest. According to the American Hospital Association and the Samueli Institute, 42 percent of 714 hospitals offered some form of complementary medicine in 2010. In 2005, it was only 27 percent.
I’ve long been a proponent of alternative medicine. As an Usui Reiki Master, I’ve experienced firsthand the amazing healing power of Reiki and other forms of CAM (complementary and alternative medicine). I also wrote a lengthy article about alternative medicine for my feature writing class last year, for which I interviewed three Reiki practitioners about the increase in the number of Americans who had tried at least one form of CAM. Unfortunately, because most healthcare providers don’t cover CAM, anyone interested in trying integrative or alternative medicine will have to pay for it out of pocket. But surveys such as the one conducted by the AHA and Samueli Institute seem to hint that this will change in the not-too-distant future.
I think our current healthcare system is in need of a major overhaul. And I would love to see CAM offered in more hospitals, and covered by health insurance. I think that if taxpayers continue to show an interest in alternative therapies, the hospitals will have to respond to what the people want. Or maybe I’m being a little idealistic.
What do you guys think? Have you tried alternative or integrative medicine, or would you in the future?