Richard Nahin, PhD, MPH

NCCAM: Whole Systems Research and the Naturopathic Community


AANP 2002 Convention ~ Salt Lake City, Utah

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Since its establishment in 1999, the National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine (NCCAM) of the NIH, has articulated and begun to implement a strategic plan that prioritizes research and research training as key vehicles to provide the public with more compelling evidence that the CAM practices they favor are safe and effective. To this end, NCCAM now supports some 200 awards for research centers, investigator-initiated research projects, large multicenter clinical trials, and fellowship and career training. Naturopathic practices are subjects of NCCAM research, and naturopathic physicians serve as essential parts of the research teams. Greater emphasis on such studies, however, can only emerge if the naturopathic community commits itself to career pathways of rigorous research training and research excellence.