Last week I went to a breakfast meeting with the AZ Integrative Wellness Coalition. Great group of different complimentary and integrative practitioners (CIM; my new word for us instead of CAM). They have recently merged with the Holistic Chamber of Commerce so there were other business owners there selling their alternative products as well; for example supplements, dietary aides, etc.
A presentation was given by an MD and his wife who told us about their research trip to Cuba. They have a national health care system that includes CIM in a system that is based on egalitarian methods. Doctors make about $15 a month and citizens have their choice of medical approaches. The doc to patient ratio is better than ours, people are living longer, education is free (even to US students as long as they go back to their homes to practice afterwards) and they haven't the health care crisis we have in the US.
The fact is, we are out of control here for two main reasons; cost of hospitalization and physician referral for procedures (profit driven). No one with adequate insurance wants to hear this because it's our right. For example, the AMA came out with new guidelines this year about prevention testing that is a 180 from what we've come to know. Women are now told to start our baseline mammograms at age 50 with subsequent testings once every 3 years or so thereafter (instead of baseline at 40 and yearly testing). The creator of the PSA test recently told the NY Times his test has been abused as well. It was meant as a guideline but has been used to refer untold unnecessary procedures. The fact is the body most often will self regulate fibroid and prostate issues given the chance; a cautionary, watchful approach should take place, not a jump to medications and surgery. Yes, the mammogram and the PSA test have saved millions, however, twice that many have had unnecessary tests, procedures, and the associated trauma of fear and tissue invasion.
Integrative health care is happening folks; MT's, Ac's, DC's, MD's. It's all good.