The Challenge of Complementary and Alternative Medicine After Austerity: A Response to Recent Commentaries

Document Type: Correspondence

Author

Center of Study and Research in Health/Centro de Estudos e Investigação em Saúde (CEISUC), University of Coimbra, Coimbra, Portugal

Abstract

Complementary and Alternative Medicine (CAM) is frequently used in Portugal and it contributes to the improvement of people’s health. CAM and Western Medicine (WM) are taken as complements both in the diagnosis and the treatment stage. The Portuguese health system is able to generate certified CAM professionals but the provision of CAM care and services is not included in the national health system. In times of austerity, this is not expected to change and access to CAM care continues to be out-of-pocket health expenditure. But the future for health in Portugal may well involve including CAM therapies in an integrated health system.

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