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Review highlights need for more education and guidance on CAM use in midwifery
Date:2/23/2011

steopaths (20%).

  • All but one of the 381 obstetric departments who took part in a German survey said they offered at least one CAM therapy, with acupuncture (97%), homeopathy (93%) and aromatherapy (77%) heading the list.

  • 78% of the 227 midwives who took part in an American study reported using CAM and 89% would refer a patient to CAM providers. The three most commonly used treatments were herbal preparations (85%), pharmacologic/biologic treatments (82%) and mind-body interventions (80%).

  • A study of 401 American obstetricians found that 98% routinely endorsed, provided or referred patients for at least one CAM treatment. Movement therapies topped the list at 86%, followed by biofeedback and acupuncture (both 80%).

    "Despite the increasing popularity of CAM in maternity care, and a generally positive attitude towards it, our research review revealed very diverse attitudes towards the practice of alternative treatments between, and within, professions" says Dr Adams.

    "For example, our study suggests that, in general, midwives have a more positive view of CAM than obstetricians and that understandings and perceptions of CAM appear to be closely linked with wider notions of professionalism and professional identity.

    "In particular, the holistic nature of CAM has a close affinity with the philosophy, professional goals and care perspectives of many midwives."

    The authors raise concerns that their research review showed that most medical professionals have no CAM training and little understanding of the pharmacological nature of alternative therapies and their possible risks to pregnant women.

    "There have recently been calls for nursing and midwifery education to include CAM training" says Dr Adams. "In addition, a number of medical organisations and registration boards, including the Royal College of Midwives and Australian Nursing Federation, have issued position statements endo
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  • Contact: Annette Whibley
    wizard.media@virgin.net
    Wiley-Blackwell
    Source:Eurekalert

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