There remains considerable skepticism among practitioners of conventional medicine and among biomedical researchers regarding the efficacy of alternative medicine. Many of the claims made by practitioners of alternative medicine have not been supported by rigorously controlled scientific study. However, in recent years many scientists have begun to conduct such studies to evaluate alternative therapies (Alternative Therapies, Other alternative medicine, Biomedical Alternative Medicine).
A division of the NIH, the National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine (NCCAM, originally the Office of Alternative Medicine), was established by the Congress of the United States in 1992 to facilitate the fair scientific evaluation of alternative therapies. The NCCAM seeks to reduce barriers that may keep promising alternative therapies from gaining widespread use. Physicians are also gaining more confidence in alternative therapies. By the late 1990s, some 75 U.S. medical schools had incorporated courses in alternative medicine into their curricula. It is possible that what was considered alternative in the past will become mainstream in years to come (Alternative Therapies, Other alternative medicine, Biomedical Alternative Medicine).
Alternative Therapies | Other alternative medicine | Biomedical Alternative Medicine