Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Benefit of Integrative Medicine

Welcome and good day to you, my name is Dorraine Cooper-Rooney, I am a Licensed Massage Therapist (MA44729) from Wesley Chapel, Florida with over 400 patients…I am a daughter of seniors and have raised 38 children…it seems like I have delt with some type of medicine since I was 18 years old…this child fell off the skateboard, that child got into a fight, mom’s blood sugar is up, dad needs teeth pulled, the other child broke a leg skiing…with all that is currently going on in healthcare, I have great concern with what I am currently seeing…I would like to show you the problems and some answers that would benefit us all…I would like to introduce you to and show you the benefit of Integrative Medicine…I can hear you in the audience groaning at yet another speech on medicine, I too am tired of hearing them…so let me show you how to fix the situation so we can move on

In medicine we fight many factors to help the patient. With the leading fight being between conventional medicine and alternative medicine, a secondary battle is on a governmental level and last (but, in now way least) how this has let big money run medicine instead of practitioners being able to work freely. Using a plan of integrative medicine would eliminate all of those battles and give, we, the patients the ability to make educated choices, the practitioners the freedom of treatment and make medicine affordable to all.

Like a prize fight in Vegas, I can almost hear the announcer…on this side, wearing the blue trunks, we have conventional medicine…can you hear the audience cheering…wearing the purple trunks, its alternative medicine…a cheer goes up from the opposite side of the arena. This has been a long drawn out battle. Neither side appears to be winning with the biggest loser being the patient.

Conventional medicine is what you now see in most hospitals…very scientific and based heavily in the use of surgery and pharmaceuticals. Dr. Andrew Weil, a Harvard trained physician and supporter of Integrative medicine is quoted stating ‘One of the great tragedies of conventional medicine is that the amount of time doctors spend with patients has come down drastically. In some countries like Japan, this is even worse where doctors now see 30 patients in an hour and are called 'two-minute doctors'.

Alternative or Natural medicine is based in the use of herbs and natural practices that have happened for thousands of years. Ayurveda, Acupuncture, Chinese Medicine and Chiropractic name a few modalities in this genera.

When you go to the hospital with the bag of supplements you are taking and the nurse or doctor looks at you like you have lost your mind…do not be surprised or amazed, it is how deeply this fight runs.

Being a student obtaining a bachelor of science in alternative medicine, who will be going to premed, let me give you a tid bit I observed…Did you know; currently there is no mandate for a premed student to take herbology or Botany? There is however one for them to take pharmacology. So a doctor does not have to know what is in the pill, just which ones to push.

I can hear you in the back…I did say Bachelor of Science in alternative medicine and going to be a Medical Doctor…how? Why? Would you choose such a path? I can see the integration of medicine happening…I want to be part of medicine to come…Integrative Medicine is taking the best of both worlds and providing it to the patient…giving we, the patient, the chance to make the best possible choices in our own healthcare. To quote Dr. Weil one more time, ‘Integrative medicine means a true marriage, a system that draws on the best aspects, ideas and practices of all systems of healing.’

Let us next go to our government on every level and how they are corrupting medicine…the accept money and or expensive gifts for votes from the AMA, insurance companies and pharmaceutical companies…these people are not overly concerned with the health of patients, only how much money those patients can put into their pockets. We are talking about a 2+ trillion dollar a year industry (Answers). Funny thing is most of the people making these decisions for us do not have any type of medical degree. A good example of this would be Governor Rick Scott of Florida, whom according to MQA license look up on the Florida Department of Health website, has never held a medical license in the state, but has in fact run several healthcare facilities. Though he did much as a business, in the hospitals he ran the level of healthcare went down as people no longer had time to care about the patients they were charged with, this I have heard from several clients. When I asked an ER nurse about it, I was told about how much more paperwork and many more patients (she asked to remain anonymous).

My son is now 28. When I gave birth to him, my nurse (Julie) only had 3 other young mothers to look after, I felt like she was one of the family and with her help I got used to being a new mother and I was given 2-3 days in the hospital. My daughters are now 21 (twins) and when I gave birth to them, the nurse had 10 girls to care for…I can not even remember her name…from the point the babies popped out, they and I were on a countdown as to how many hours the insurance company would pay for me to stay. In the years since, the rooms got nicer, but the care got so limited…it is actually a much worse experience and we wonder why so many young girls are going through post partum depression? Really?

Another place you see care slipping, is the use of transportation to nursing homes for clients who do not show immediate recovery…according to the Insurance it is cheaper for them…that is because they do not concern themselves with what is actually best for the patient only the bottom line…young people in nursing homes recover much more slowly due to depression from their surroundings (Yahoo). I know I would want to get put in a room with a few 90 year olds to recover from knee surgery, would you?

Look around the room; can we count 2 people in this room that don’t take at least one pill a day? Think about that. When I was growing up, only people who were sick took pills…now it seems we all do. Pharmaceutical companies have worked to make us a pill centered society. Got a bump on your toe…got a pill for it…got a rash on your butt…got a pill for it…what about when the pills stop working?

In the end, it will be up to us as patients to stand up for the right to have and use Integrative Medicine. I wish to appeal to each and every one of you to speak to your health care provider about their knowledge of Integrative Medicine. I ask those of you who have insurance to request your provider have Integrative qualifications. Do not be afraid of your federal, state and local officials…stand up and talk to them for in the end they too would benefit from a better form of health care.

In conclusion, I find when Integrative Medicine used…I see much healthier patients, lower healthcare costs and the ability to provide better care to many. With the ‘type of’ healthcare fight that would no longer exist, practitioners could focus on education. Wouldn’t that be a better world for all of us?

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