240483 Use of Complementary and Alternative Health Care for Prevention and Health Promotion: Analysis of NHIS Data

Monday, October 31, 2011: 11:00 AM

Cheryl Hawk, DC, PhD , Director of Clinical Research, Logan College of Chiropractic, Chesterfield, MO
Marion Willard Evans, DC, PhD, CHES , Director of Research, Texas Chiropractic College, Pasadena, TX
Harrison T. Ndetan, BSc, MSc, MPH, DrPH , Research Institute, Parker College of Chiropractic, Dallas, TX
Purpose: Currently, Americans receive only half the preventive services recommended. The purpose of this study was to make a preliminary assessment of the contributions of the most frequently used U.S. CAM providers to chronic disease prevention, health promotion and wellness, using National Health Interview Survey (NHIS) data. Methods: Secondary analysis of the NHIS 2007 Adult Alternative Medicine data set. National population estimates (weighted frequencies) were generated using the NHIS survey weights. Conditions for which respondents sought care were categorized as "chronic disease management," "disease prevention," and "health promotion." A separate survey question asked respondents about use of CAM for "general wellness or general disease prevention." Results: The most commonly used provider-based CAM practices within the past 12 months were chiropractic or osteopathic manipulation (C/OM; 8.4%), massage (6.1%) and acupuncture (1.4%). Energy healing, homeopathy, naturopathy, hypnosis and Ayurveda were each used by ≤ 0.5% of respondents. All CAM therapies were used for chronic disease management, led by C/OM (71.6%), massage (30.6%) and acupuncture (45.1%). All the practices showed very little use for specific disease prevention or health promotion, as indicated by the conditions for which they sought care. However, substantial proportions of respondents reported use of these practices for general wellness and disease prevention°ĒC/OM, 44.6%; massage 55.7%; acupuncture, 42.3%, energy healing 82.4%, homeopathy, 69.4% and naturopathy, 78.6%. Conclusions: Relatively small numbers of Americans use CAM providers, most commonly for management of chronic conditions. However, substantial proportions of users report seeking care for general wellness and disease prevention as well.

Learning Areas:
Administer health education strategies, interventions and programs
Other professions or practice related to public health
Provision of health care to the public
Public health or related research

Learning Objectives:
Participants will understand the allocation of preventive services offered by various complementary and alternative providers as determined by National Health Interveiw Survey data.

Keywords: Alternative Medicine/Therapies, Primary Prevention

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I am an APHA member and have worked on the NHIS several times, including in this case and direct research at a chiropractic college
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.