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I turned to alternative medicine after many unsuccessful attempts to cure my eczema with traditional treatments.
While funding for the National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine increases each year commensurate with the multiyear doubling of the overall NIH budget, it is critical that other federal agencies charged with programs relative to health resources and services, primary care, health professions training and workforce development, consumer education, health services research and other areas be brought to bear on the important challenge and opportunity of integrative medicine.
Complimentary and Alternative Medicine Secrets," Wendy Kohatsu, ed.
The National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine (NCCAM) was established at the National Institutes of Health (NIH) in 1998 by Congress to stimulate, develop, and support research on CAM to benefit the public (NIH, 2000a).
Smith, Program Director, Office of Cancer Complementary and Alternative Medicine, NCI, 6130 Executive Boulevard, EPN, Suite 102, MSC 7302, Bethesda, MD 20892-7302 USA, 301-435-7980, fax: 301-480-0075, e-mail: smithwe@mail.
According to the National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine, CAM practices can be grouped within five major domains:
I suspect that alternative medicine may simply be another choice that people make to glow themselves to maintain a familiar passivity toward their health--looking for a new quick fix rather than taking the initiative to refuse that second doughnut, walk to the movies instead of drive, or finish the full course of antibiotics twice a day on an empty stomach.
Most observers say the turning point came in 1998 when the NIH, after enduring years of criticism over its shoddy alternative medicine office, made a bid for credibility by announcing that it would recommit to serious scientific testing--and established, with great fanfare, the National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine (NCCAM).
A recent study by Opinion for Norske Homeoopaters Landsforbund (NHL), the Norwegian homeopathic organisation, has shown that last year, 40% of Norwegians used some form of alternative medicine.
In Switzerland alternative medicine has become hugely popular, as demonstrated by an independent survey conducted in December 2000 by the Polyquest Research Polling organisation in Bern at the request of the the Aeskulap Kilnik, the Hospital for Biological Holistic Medicine, in Brunnen SZ.
We believe this applies to patients uniformly, regardless of whether they're taking prescription medications or alternative medicine agents.
Alternative medicine is not a recent phenomenon, and at different times, branches of the movement have enjoyed widespread public support.

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