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Hospitals Turning to TCM and Acupuncture, Other non-Western Treatments

By: Sam Gaines, Staff Writer

According to a 2006 survey by the American Hospital Association (AHA), more than one out of every four hospitals in the U.S. now offer some “alternative” therapies, including acupuncture, traditional Chinese medicine, homeopathy, and massage therapy, among other types of non-Western treatment.

The survey, conducted every other year by the AHA, involved more than 6,000 hospitals across the country in December 2005. The percentage of hospitals offering “complementary and alternative medicine” (CAM) therapies grew from 8 percent in 1998 to 27 percent in 2005, the survey found.

The top six therapies offered by AHA member hospitals were:

  • Massage therapy (71 percent)

  • Tai chi, yoga, or Qi gong (47 percent)

  • Relaxation training (43 percent)

  • Acupuncture (39 percent)

  • Guided imagery (32 percent)

  • Therapeutic touch (30 percent)
The survey also found that patients paid for most of these services out of pocket.

Source: American Hospital Association, July 2006

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