The Problematic Economics of Integrative Oncology

Published in: The Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine, Volume 24, Issues 9-10, pages 1025-1027 (2018). doi: 10.1089/acm.2018.0155

Posted on RAND.org on June 11, 2019

by Patricia M. Herman

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Practitioners of integrative medicine/health, including those who practice integrative oncology, believe that their therapies can help their patients and lower healthcare costs. Beliefs about the effectiveness of integrative therapies are increasingly supported by clinical evidence, and there are good reasons for believing integrative medicine can lower costs: integrative approaches tend to be less invasive,avoid high technology, focus on prevention, and engage patients in self-care. However, we have few data regarding the economic impact of integrative approaches, and even less about the economics of integrative oncology.

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