Health and Medical News and Resources

General interest items edited by Janice Flahiff

NIH Launches Web Resource on Complementary and Alternative Medicine

N C C A M: The National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine

From the US National Institutes of Health (NIH) press release

A new online resource, designed to give health care providers easy access to evidence-based information on complementary and alternative medicine (CAM), was unveiled today by the National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine (NCCAM) of the National Institutes of Health.

With this new resource, providers will have the tools necessary to learn about the various CAM practices and products and be better able to discuss the safety and effectiveness of complementary and alternative medicine with their patients….

NCCAM developed a resource that provides reliable, objective, and evidenced-based information on CAM, including:

Americans annually spend nearly $34 billion out-of-pocket on CAM products and practices. Surveys show that nearly 40 percent of American adults and 12 percent of American children use some form of CAM. Other surveys show that patients do not regularly discuss these practices with their health care providers. In fact, a recent study of Americans aged 50 and older found that overall two-thirds of respondents had not discussed CAM with their health care provider.

“NCCAM is charged to study and provide evidence-based information on the safety and efficacy of CAM health practices that are readily available and already used by a great number of people,” said Josephine P. Briggs, M.D., director of NCCAM. “As a physician, I understand the need to have easily accessible and accurate information on all health practices. This Web resource is a way for NCCAM to share this valuable information with all providers.”

To use this resource, please visit nccam.nih.gov/health/providers/.

Doctor at hospital speaking to patient in wheelchairNCCAM’s Time to Talk campaign encourages patients to tell their providers about CAM use and providers to ask about it by offering tools and resources—such as wallet cards, posters, and tip sheets—all of which are available for free at nccam.nih.gov/timetotalk/.

The mission of the National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine (NCCAM) is to define, through rigorous scientific investigation, the usefulness and safety of complementary and alternative medicine (CAM) interventions and their roles in improving health and health care. For additional information, call NCCAM’s Clearinghouse toll free at 1-888-644-6226, or visit the NCCAM Web site at nccam.nih.gov.

The National Institutes of Health (NIH)—The Nation’s Medical Research Agency—includes 27 Institutes and Centers and is a component of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. It is the primary federal agency for conducting and supporting basic, clinical, and translational medical research, and it investigates the causes, treatments, and cures for both common and rare diseases. For more information about NIH and its programs, visit http://www.nih.gov.

Additional Resources
Natural & Alternative Treatments
Contains detailed information on almost 200 different conditions and the conventional and natural treatments used to treat them, over 300 herbs and supplements, plus drug-herb and drug-supplement interactions for more than 90 drug categories.

Drugs and Supplements (sponsored by the Mayo Clinic)

Somewhat lengthy drug and over-the-counter medicationinformation with these sections: description, before using, proper use, precautions and side effects. From Micromedex, a trusted source of healthcare information for health professionals.  

Herb and supplement information includes information on uses based on scientific evidence as well as safety and potential interactions with drugs, herbs, and supplements. From Natural Standard, an independent group of researchers and clinicians


Drugs, Supplements, and Herbal Information (from a MedlinePlus page)

Prescription and over-the-counter medication information contains answers to many general questions including topics as what a drug is used for, precautions, side effects, dietary instructions, and overdoses. From the American Society of Health System Pharmacists

Herb and supplement information includes information on uses based on scientific evidence as well as safety and potential interactions with drugs, herbs, and supplements. From Natural Standard, an independent group of researchers and clinicians.

April 26, 2011 - Posted by | Consumer Health, Librarian Resources, Professional Health Care Resources | , , , ,

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