Research

The Program for Integrative Medicine and Health Care Disparities conducts research in several areas relevant to underserved  or ethnic minority populations.

Complementary and Alternative Medicine (CAM) therapies such as supplements, meditation, yoga, massage, and acupuncture are increasingly popular in the U.S. Studies estimate over one-third of U.S. adults use CAM therapies while approximately one of ten children use them.  Well-designed research studies need to be carried out to determine which of these complementary therapies are safe and effective.

National surveys also show, however, disparities in CAM use based upon race, income, and education.  For example, CAM use is much less common in non-whites, Hispanics, low-income individuals, and those with less education. Although CAM research has increased dramatically in the previous two decades, relatively little has been research has been conducted with minority or low income individuals.

Our research at the Program for Integrative Medicine and Health Disparities focuses on why these disparities in CAM use exist, their implications, and strategies to address them.  As federal, private, and academic stakeholders invest millions of dollars into CAM research, it is imperative that we study the feasibility and effectiveness of CAM and integrative medicine in multicultural communities and vulnerable populations.

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Program for Integrative Medicine & Health Care Disparities
Department of Family Medicine
1 Boston Medical Center Place
Dowling 5 South
Boston, MA 02118
Phone: 617.414.6795
Fax: 617.414.3345