Complementary and alternative medical therapies: implications for medical education

Ann Intern Med. 2003 Feb 4;138(3):191-6. doi: 10.7326/0003-4819-138-3-200302040-00011.


Increased use of complementary and alternative medicine (CAM) has made it imperative that these topics be included in medical education from the preclinical years through residency and beyond. There has been progress in this direction in recent years, with a steady increase in the number of medical schools that include CAM therapies in their curricula. There remains, however, a lack of clear goals and concrete suggestions for implementing these changes. This article examines the questions that arise when medical educators consider how to incorporate CAM therapies as an integral part of the medical curriculum. It offers practical suggestions for finding time in an already packed curriculum, getting started, including faculty and students in the process, and sustaining the initiative with the necessary administrative and institutional support.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Complementary Therapies*
  • Curriculum / trends*
  • Education, Medical / trends*
  • Faculty, Medical
  • Forecasting
  • Goals
  • Humans
  • Interdisciplinary Communication
  • Students, Medical
  • United States