Alternative medicine is going mainstream, recent research indicates, and increasing demand for the services of complementary and alternative medicine (CAM) practitioners has given rise to alternative medicine degrees and courses.
"Complementary and alternative medicine" is an umbrella term used to refer to a wide range of traditional medicine practices, some of the best known of which include acupuncture, homeopathy and massage. A focus on overall wellness, including mental health, and preventative treatment ties these diverse health care practices together.
As alternative medicine grows in popularity, both specialized CAM practitioners and mainstream health care providers are seeking out alternative medicine courses.
Alternative healing methods promote overall wellness
Alternative medicine programs range from certificate programs in massage therapy that last a matter of months to four-year postgraduate degrees in naturopathic medicine that result in an N.D. (naturopathic doctor) degree.
Coursework in an N.D. program includes the same science courses students in a conventional medical school might take as well as coursework such as:
- Nutritional science
- Botanical medicine
With its focus on overall wellness and disease prevention, alternative medicine stands to play an important role in health care in coming years by cutting costs and promoting healthy living.