Acupuncture: Cost-effective health care for today

In addition to successfully addressing a wide range of health issues, the use of acupuncture has allowed patients to spend less on their overall health care.

by Kim Blankenship — 

At a time when health care expenses are taking a larger bite out of most household budgets, many people are looking for affordable alternatives to conventional care. A study released by the National Academy of Sciences in 2005 found that more than one third of American adults report using some form of complementary and alternative medicine, such as acupuncture or naturopathy.

Acupuncture, which has been determined by the World Health Organization to be effective at treating pain, stress, gastrointestinal disorders, gynecological problems, respiratory disease, cardiovascular issues, chronic fatigue and neurological disorders, has proven to be a powerful alternative therapy for millions of patients. In addition to successfully addressing a wide range of health issues, the use of acupuncture has allowed patients to spend less on their overall health care.

Dr. Claire M. Cassidy, Ph.D., L.Ac., conducted a study (Health Visions 2000) with patients visiting six acupuncture and Oriental medicine clinics in five states, and found that:

  • 84 percent reported seeing their M.D. less often.
  • 70 percent of those who had been recommended for surgery were able to avoid the procedure.
  • 79 percent reported reduced usage of prescription medications.
  • 77 percent stated they were asking for fewer insurance reimbursements.
  • 77 percent reported seeing physical therapists less often.
  • 58 percent reported seeing psychotherapists less often.

The majority of patients surveyed also stated that most of the time they had less pain and more energy, missed fewer workdays and were more focused.

The burgeoning network of Community Acupuncture clinics, where patients can receive affordable treatments ranging from $15 to $40 per visit, allows access to regular health care for patients without insurance, or those who have to budget carefully.

As more and more Americans are looking to cut expenses, acupuncture is a valuable option for health care.

 

Kim Blankenship, M.S.O.M., L.Ac.,  is a licensed acupuncturist at Jade Spirit Community Acupuncture, 3520 E. Indian School Road, Ste. A, in Phoenix. 602-957-3675 or www.jadespirit.info.

Reprinted from AzNetNews, Volume 27, Number 6, December 2008/January 2009.

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