Trends come and go. But one thing seems to remain the same, and the prices are rising just as high as the industry. Westernized-conventional medicine is the status quo in America, and is favored by almost all insurance companies. Emphasizing almost all medical finances in westernized-conventional medicine, insurance customers are left with little choice in how they want to be treated.
A third of U.S. adults are currently being treated with some form of alternative medicine, and are paying for it out-of-pocket, according to U.S News Health. Popular alternatives to westernized medicine include; chiropractic, homeopathic , and holistic healing (the list goes on). Each alternative source offers a different approach to one's overall health in relieving a variety of aspects including overall mind, body, and spiritual health. Westernized-conventional medicine is effective, but fails to offer the full-range of treatments patients are looking for. Whether or not westernized doctors agree with alternative medicine outside of their own practice, the beliefs of the patients are an important factor in overall healing and well being.
Even medical practices close-to-home of conventional medicine, like physical therapy, aren't covered very well by insurance explains Audrey Roman, who interns for The Reno Orthopedic Center.
“Insurance companies only cover so much for patients getting treated at the clinic, even those with really good medical insurance,” Roman said.
She mentioned cases where clients at the clinic couldn’t afford to continue treatments to full recovery due to insurance only covering a set amount of appointments.
“I think it would be beneficial for patients if medical insurance changed their policies,” Roman said.“Rather than covering a set amount of visits followed by out-of-pocket charges once the visits are up, insurance companies should insure a full recovery of the patient, with their focus on returning them to their full sufficient self post-injury.”
Health insurers can limit or even deny coverage they deem experimental or not medically necessary, and in most cases they do.
If an alternative practice accepts insurance, many people have to face the obstacle of the insurer requiring a statement of medical necessity or prescription from a primary care doctor.
I have personally faced this problem when trying to get chiropractic help. Having to get a required referral from my doctor to cover the chiropractic expense by insurance, I was refused the referral, therefore my insurance would not cover medical costs and I could not afford treatment. My back was out of alignment so the doctor prescribed me with anti- inflammatories and I was told to stretch. This was neither effective or what I was hoping for as treatment .Yes, my back would be relieved of pain temporarily, but it wasn’t going to fix my unaligned back.
Overall, westernized medicine brings in the most money and proves to be very effective. But are we overlooking this matter? If insurance covered alternative medicines, I know I would see a holistic doctor when faced with most illnesses and use natural products and medicines to aid me. Unfortunately, without the help of insurance, this is an unattainable goal financially as a college-student.
Americans can relate to the affordability crisis of wanting to turn to alternative medicine but can’t, and the statistics prove it. The billions of dollars being spent out-of-pocket by consumers add up quickly. If insurance helped cover alternative medical treatments, more money would go into these alternative practices, therefore making it more profitable for both the practice and insurance companies. Unfortunately, since alternative practices remain un-affordable without help from insurance, our money is forcefully tied up in westernized- conventional medicine.
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I feel my purpose is to show readers and viewers different perspectives of the world through the eyes of others. Everyday I challenge myself to think of new theories and concepts, change-up my routine and viewpoints, and allow myself to be creative both mentally and physically. I feel knowledge is power and when we choose to evolve and understand ourselves, we choose to understand our world and the people in it.