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Use of Alternative Medicine, Chiropractic Rising in Both the United States and Canada

Volume 11 Issue 98

Two recent surveys point to widespread and growing use of alternative forms of medical treatment in both the United States and in Canada. In the US, more that 37% of households regularly turn to alterative treatments over those provided only by a medical doctor and drugs. In Canada, the figure is over 50%.

The US survey involved 23,000 adults and was conducted by Thompson Medstat in 2006. Findings included 37% of US households seeking out alternative treatments, including Chiropractic, for everything from headaches to control of diabetes. Herbal supplements, Chiropractic and massage were the highest ranked items used among respondents.

"Alternative medicine use has become so widespread that it is now critical for traditional Western physicians to factor a whole new set of potential interactions into treatment decisions," said Dr. David Schutt, associate medical director at Thompson Medstat. "Knowing the statistics behind alternative medicine use is a good start, but further study of this area is necessary."

To the North, over one half of all Canadians are using some form of alternative medicine according to a survey conducted in 2006 by The Fraser Institute which has, just now been released. Interestingly, in the last 6 months of the survey over 3.6 million Canadians visited a chiropractor. That converts to 13% of all Canadians!

"This increased use of alternative therapies is another indicator of Canadians' desire to have more choice and control over their healthcare options," said Nadeem Esmail, the director of Health System Performance at The Frasier Institute and the author of the report.

A note of interest pointed out in the findings was that most alternative treatment options are not covered by the government health insurance plans in Canada. "When it comes to health and well-being, a significant number of Canadians are willing to spend their own money," said Dr. Esmail.

Source: The World Chiropractic Alliance 2007 http://www.worldchiropracticalliance.org/tcj/2007/jun/j.htm and Kid Chiropractic 2007 www.kidchiropractic.com

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