Recently, the National Center for Complementary & Alternative Medicine changed its name to the National Center for Complementary & Integrative Health. What do you suppose the reasons are for this?

I think it’s actually a pretty good change. Many people have a negative association with “alternative medicine” as it generally (to them) implies that it’s kind of hocus pocus therapy and there’s no real scientific evidence or research to back it up. The general public tends to think “oh, if willow bark worked as well as aspirin, we’d all be taking that instead”, or “my doctor would have suggested vitamin C if that were really the cure for cancer” among many other things, failing to see the unfortunate politics behind the situation most of the time. I think that by changing the name to “integrative health” instead of “alternative medicine”, the National Center for Complementary and Integrative health is able to reach more people. I think that the general public is more keen on a phrase like “integrative health” and more open to the ideas and concepts behind it. I feel that the new name change kind of implies that they integrate all forms of health and all forms of medicine, healing, and wellness to find the best possible solutions for people and gives the institute a little more credibility to those who don’t believe in “alternative medicine”.

This was an awesome class and I’m so happy that i could be a part of it. I learned a lot of really fantastic things this semester, and although i was skeptical about the class setup at first, I’m really happy with the way it turned out.

Thanks for a great semester everyone!