There is a movement happening amongst doctors during the past 10 years.
Tired of conventional approaches to medical treatment, to overdiagnosing of medications and to the medical system as a whole, they are looking for alternatives.
And for many of them, the Integrative Functional Medicine approach is what is most appealing.
Integrative medicine is a holistic approach to the body, and all the elements that make up a person’s wellbeing. These elements can include sleep, diet, stress, hormones, genetics, exercise, digestion and a whole host of other factors.
Rather than just diagnose and medicate, these doctors are focused on what can be done outside the medical arena to impact the wellbeing of the person.
The Appeal of an Integrative Approach to Medicine
A 2017 study into the Integrative Medicine Market which 1,133 integrative MDs and DOs from 49 states, identified five reasons why doctors are switching their practice approach:
- Treating the patient as a whole being
- Treating root causes versus symptoms
- Focusing on optimal health instead of disease management
- A more personalized approach focused on the physician-patient relationship
- Accounting for patient lifestyle and environment
Key Differences in the Integrative Approach for Doctors
As well as the appeal of treating patients in a more holistic way, there is an appeal from the business owners perspective as well.
Some of the key reasons that doctors enjoy the Integrative approach are:
- Income and Quality of Life: 67 percent of the doctors surveyed reported that quality of life was better or since beginning to practice integrative medicine. 19 percent reported that their income has increased since transitioning.
- Length of appointment: On average, integrative doctors spend at least twice as much time with their patients as conventional doctors. This reduces time pressure and the sense of stress it creates.
- Post Medical School Education: Despite conventional medical schools not offering Integrative training, over 55 percent) of integrative doctors adopted an integrative philosophy post-schooling.
- Use of Dietary supplements: 84 percent of Integrative physicians utilize nutritional protocols to support their patients’ health. This can act as a profit center for some Integrative clinics when added effectively.
The Changing Culture and the Adoption of Alternative Medicine
Seventy percent of Americans believe in the positive effects of complementary and alternative medicine.
Traditionally, the majority of physicians did not discuss alternative therapies with their patients, but this is slowly changing.
Studies have found that most traditional physicians now have a more positive attitude toward complementary and alternative medicine. In fact, a majority of obstetricians and gynecologists offer their patients at least one alternative medicine modality during treatment.
Many doctors feel that the insurance-based medical approach often doesn’t allow them enough time to properly diagnose and treat the true causes of disease.
For this reason, both the doctors and the patients they treat the Integrative model has a strong appeal. As it grows in popularity, the hope is that Integrative Medicine will become the norm and simply become known as practicing medicine.
If you are interested in growing an Integrative Medicine Practice, then Nexsys is here to support you. We have over 25 years experience in business and technical support for the Healthcare industry and focus entirely on the Integrative Model for Medical Practitioners.