NIH Launches CAM Website for Practitioners

May 16, 2011

The website, http://nccam.nih.gov/health/providers, a portal on the NCCAM website, is said to be tailored to fit the needs of all healthcare providers.

The National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine (NCCAM) of the National Institutes of Health (NIH) has launched a new online resource designed to give healthcare providers easy access to “evidence-based information” on complementary and alternative medicine (CAM) so that they can discuss the safety and efficacy of CAM with their patients.

The website, http://nccam.nih.gov/health/providers, a portal on the NCCAM website, is said to be tailored to fit the needs of all healthcare providers, including physicians, nurses and nurse practitioners, physician assistants, and CAM providers.

Information includes provided includes safety data on natural products such as dietary supplements, efficacy information, links to systematic reviews, summaries of research studies, scientific literature searches, and more.

NCCAM says that Americans annually spend nearly $34 billion out-of-pocket on CAM products and practices. Surveys show that nearly 40% of American adults and 12% of American children use some form of CAM. Moreover, surveys show that many patients do not regularly discuss these practices with their healthcare providers. (A recent study of Americans ages 50 and older found that overall, two-thirds of respondents had not discussed CAM with their healthcare practitioner.)