Transforming Medicines



By Charles Elder, MD, MPH, FACP; Cheryl Ritenbaugh, PhD, MPH

Summer 2007 - Volume 11 Number 3

https://doi.org/10.7812/TPP/07-046

Whole Person

What will it take to transform our health care system? Anecdotal experience and qualitative data suggest that patients undergoing treatment within certain Complementary and Alternative Medicine (CAM) systems (eg, ayurveda, traditional Chinese medicine, and naturopathy) may experience and value nonspecific, whole-person, or transformational changes as essential components of the healing process. Conventional medicine's limitations in appreciating such phenomena may represent an under-recognized root cause of chronic dissatisfaction with and within primary care. Meaningful progress, then, could require the transformation of our own practice toward selectively incorporating CAM paradigms. Clinical investigators and educators are already responding to this challenge.

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