BACK

Collaboration between Medicine and CAM in Clinical Practice

As has been mentioned, the demand for alternative treatment methods in developed countries is steadily increasing. This gradual transformation of patients' and clients’ demands naturally also influences medical institutions – GPs and hospitals. The vision of an effective collaboration between conventional and alternative medicine is no longer been merely utopian. Since the 1990s, projects integrating the two approaches in practice have been developed. – Integrative medicine or integrated health care has emerged as a new concept and is gaining more and more supporters among physicians as well as medical students.

In the Western world, significant steps have been taken toward integrating the two approaches, in particular in the United States – centres of integrative medicine have been established even at renowned universities such as Harvard, Yale, Stanford, etc. In Europe, Great Britain is a pioneer in integrative medicine; some integrative medicine centres, such as the Royal London Hospital for Integrated Medicine, have a long tradition and are part of the national health system. These centres have subsequently inspired similar projects in other European countries, such as Italy.

Due to the demands from their clients, the number of hospitals that offer alternative therapies, such as energy therapies like reiki or healing touch, is growing.

The following pages provide a information about the practical integration of conventional medicine and CAM in each country. The information is not exhaustive.

You can find an overview of and links to specific hospitals and health centres, especially in Europe, where CAM (including energy therapies) is used in the chapter Recommended Links on page 239.

A CAM Survey in US Hospitals

Integrated medicine in US hospitals

“Healing Touch” in US hospitals

Reiki in US hospitals

Reiki is an accepted form of care in US hospitals

Energy Therapies in US hospitals in 2005

Philadelphia Research: Positive Effects of CAM Utilization in Oncology

Evrope: Integrative oncology in the EU

Great Britain: Long-term collaboration between CAM and conventional medicine in the UK

Royal London Hospital for Integrated Medicine

France: CAM in Paris hospitals

Italy: Integrating CAM into the healthcare

Tuscany’s experience of integrating CAM into the healthcare system

Norway: Use of CAM within Norwegian hospitals