Tuesday, February 9, 2010

National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine is Changing Directions

The National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine (NCCAM) is "expected to focus less on the large human clinical trials common in the past and more on fundamental research," according to an article released by the American Botanical Council (ABC).

The Center, which is entering its second decade of operations, will continue to dedicate more than 50% of its research to human studies, but will move towards a more "patient-centered approach," focusing on "effectiveness-based studies emphasizing interventions in real-world settings."

Dr. Josephine P. Briggs, NCCAM Director, told ABC that "All of us recognize that assessing how modalities work in real world settings is critical,” and she noted a study that "uses existing data, including 5 years of insurance claims, to compare outcomes, quality of care, and costs of patients who use CAM providers for back pain treatment with those who do not."

You can read more about potential areas of focus for NCCAM research, as well as how these changes may influence CAM modalities and the general healthcare system, from Herbal Gram: http://cms.herbalgram.org/heg/Volume7/02%20February/NCCAM_Future.html?t=1265060114

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