Alternative therapies: are they holistic?

Saks, Mike (1997) Alternative therapies: are they holistic? Complementary Therapies in Nursing & Midwifery, 3 (1). pp. 4-8. ISSN 1353-6117

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Item Type:Article
Item Status:Live Archive

Abstract

This paper discusses the extent to which alternative therapies are distinctively holistic. It begins by defining what is meant by 'alternative therapies' and 'holism'. In this process, alternative medicine is contrasted with the biomedical basis of orthodox medicine; the critique of which has led to the development of contemporary notions of holistic practice. The historical background to the holistic health movement is then charted with reference to the rise of the medical profession, which has become increasingly unified around biomedicine. The largely holistic nature of alternative health care today is illustrated by case studies of specific alternative therapies and their practice contexts. However, it is argued that not every aspect of alternative medicine can be seen as holistic, nor should it be assumed that all elements of orthodox practice are non-holistic. The paper concludes by emphasizing the opportunities that exist for nurses and other allied professionals to become more involved with alternative therapies in order to extend their holistic approach to health care.

Additional Information:Continued as: Complementary Therapies in Clinical Practice
Keywords:alternative medicine, holistic nursing, human, patient advocacy, philosophy, review, social change, Complementary Therapies, Holistic Health, Humans, Social Change
Divisions:Professional services > Vice Chancellors Office
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ID Code:12614
Deposited On:16 Dec 2013 13:26

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