Holistic Care Practice and CAM modalities essay

HolisticCare Practice and CAM modalities

HolisticCare Practice and CAM modalities

Principlesof holistic care and holistic caring process

Accordingto AmericanHolistic Health Association(2016), holistic careis“theart and science of healing that addresses the whole person – body,mind, and spirit”. Holistic care is meant to promote the idealhealth through the integration of conventional and alternativetherapies in the treatment and prevention of disease. The practiceencompasses all appropriate and safe modalities of analysis ordiagnosis and treatment such as nutritional, physical, emotional,lifestyle, and spiritual elements. Moreover, the practice focuses onpatient participation and education in the treatment process(AmericanHolistic Health Association, 2016Willison, Lindsay, Taylor, Schroeder, &amp Andrews, 2013). Thepractice draws on nurturing or treatment instinct, proficiency,theories, and knowledge to direct nurses in becoming healing partnerswith the patient in their care. Nurses may assimilate CAM(complementary/alternative modalities) into clinical practice totreat patients’ spiritual, physiological, emotional, lifestyle, andpsychological needs. The incorporation of these modalities does notnegate the rationality of conventional therapeutic remedies, but ithelps to supplement, extend, and improve the range of the nursingpractice.

Someof the principles of holistic care include the use of safe andeffective treatment options, search for underlying causes of disease,cost-effective treatment, ideal physician –patient relationship,and patient participation in the healing process. Holistic careembraces a range of effective, harmless options in the analysis andmanagement including complementary alternatives and education forlifestyle changes (Willison et al., 2013). The practice prefersprevention and examining the underlying causes of a disease totreating and managing symptoms alone. The practice motivates patientsto arouse the therapeutic power of hope, love, humor, and enthusiasmand to release the toxic implications of greed, hostility, shame, andgrief. Furthermore, the holistic caring process focuses on culturalcompetence, holistic ethics, holistic communication, holisticeducation, therapeutic care as well as the therapeutic environment(AmericanHolistic Health Association, 2016).Holistic health is characterized by complete wellbeing in the bodyspirit and mind. Patients and physicians view pain, illness and deathas a learning process.

Differencesin patient needs when developing a holistic plan of care

Itis always important to consider differences in patient needs when itcomes to developing a holistic plan of care. Patients normally havedifferent needs that can be categorized into physical concerns,practical concerns, family concerns, as well as, lifestyle andinformation needs. When it comes to differences in physical concerns,the physician should consider the sexuality, level of concentration,memory, level of pain and fatigue when developing a care plan(Micozzi, 2010). Patients have different practical concerns when itcomes to matters such as travel, insurance, housing, money,education, work and caring responsibilities hence, physicians shouldalways consider these differences. Patients have differences inrelationship needs that the physicians also need to addressdifferently. Furthermore, patients have different information needsthat need to be considered when it comes to holistic care. There arepatients that may need information on different areas such ashobbies, sun protection, drugs, alcohol, smoking, nutrition,exercise, and support groups.

Similaritiesand differences between complementary and western medicine

Complementarymedicine denotes the therapeutic products and practices that work incombination with the conventional medicine, for instance, a cancerpatient undertaking chemotherapy may also undertake acupuncture toaid in handling the side effects associated with chemotherapy. On theother hand, alternative medicine is a healing practice that is usedas a substitute rather than a complement to conventional medicine,for example, the treatment of cancer through specific dietary changesrather than chemotherapy. Western medicine is a healing practice thathas developed over centuries to a system of care, for example, theuse of chemotherapy in managing cancer (Willison et al., 2013). Boththe alternative and complementary practices are usually holistic andencompass treatments from numerous cultural and historicalbackgrounds thus, they feature diverse treatment options. The threestyles of treatment focus on establishing a quality relationshipbetween the patient and the physician. In both cases, a successfuloutcome is dependent on the quality of the relationship between thepatient and the practitioner. When it comes to differences,alternative medicine focuses on non-medicine while complementary andwestern medicines focus on medicinal therapies. On the other hand,complementary and alternative medicine are holistic and put intoconsideration the cultural and historical background of the patientwhile western medicine only focuses on addressing problems causingvarious disease symptoms (Micozzi, 2010). Moreover, alternative andcomplementary medicines allow patient participation in the treatmentprocess while western medicine puts a lot of focus on the physicianwith very little involvement from the patient.

Therole of nutrition, exercise, and humor in complementary medicine

Complementaryor alternative therapies come in different forms, which may includenon-medicinal therapies such as nutrition, exercise, humor and musictherapy. Since nutritional deficiencies cause some illnesses,nutritional therapy helps in the healing process by ensuring the bodygets the right nutrients (Micozzi, 2010). Other alternative therapiessuch as music and humor come in handy when a patient feels out ofcontrol and vulnerable because they enhance the body and soul byproviding the necessary guidance. Music and humor help in stressmanagement apart from improving a patient’s physical and emotionalfunction. In fact, there are many cases where patients have testifiedthat their pain disappeared after laughter sessions. Both music andhumor have some therapeutic benefits that are difficult to explain inmedical terms.

Barriersto integrative system of care

Acombination of complementary care and conventional medicine iscommonly referred to as integrative care but changing the currenthealthcare system that is more distinct integrative system has alwaysfaced quite some barriers. Healthcare organizations wishing toimplement integrated care face a wide range of technical issues suchas regulation, government arrangements, contracting as well as apayment mechanism. The command and control approach in mosthealthcare organizations leads to a bureaucratic environment that isnot favorable for integrative care. In addition to that, mosthealthcare organizations and professionals may have weaker ties andpoor alignment, and this is always a challenge for the implementationof integrative care. System complexity in healthcare organizations isalso a major barrier to integrative care because comprehensiverestructuring is required for collaborative work to take place.Moreover, inadequate funding for collaborative work has also beenanother challenge for successful implementation of integrated care.

of case file

Apatient case file includes all the necessary information about apatient including age, sex and diagnosis. A case file of a malepatient that is 29 years old can be used as an example in this study,and the patient has been diagnosed with coronary artery disease. Therecommended specialists for this case include a neurologist avascular specialist and a cardiologist. The methods of diagnosisinclude blood tests to check proteins, sugar and cholesterol levelsin the blood, stress testing, Computed Tomography Scan andEchocardiography and the physical check for pulses and blood flow.The Computed Tomography Scan revealed the hardening and narrowing oflarge arteries while the blood tests revealed high levels ofcholesterol and sugar levels in the blood.

Needsreview and interventions

Thediagnosis revealed that the patient had developed the coronary heartdisease because of artery blockages, hardening of large arteries andabnormal levels of sugar and cholesterol in the blood. Coronary heartdisease is a common and fatal disease especially in America thus,the review of the issue needs to include the concerns of thecommunity and the medical practitioners. The needs of the patientinclude emotional, health, physical, lifestyle, psychological, andspiritual. The need to distinguish the patient as being at high riskof accessing care services and regarding clinical end points willremain paramount during the assessment. Moreover, in cases where thecontentment component in the SAQ (Short Form Physical ComponentScore) generates a lower score, the cardiac practitioners must becognizant of the possible shortcomings in the provision of care. Someof the recommended interventions for this case include angioplasty toopen blocked arteries, medicines to lower blood cholesterol levels aswell as lifestyle changes like regular exercise, maintaining ahealthy weight and stress management.

Implementationof complementary and alternative care

Inthis case, complementary care specialist will have to collaboratewith conventional care providers to meet all the patient needs. Aftersurgery and other corrective procedures, the rest of the treatmentwill be to providers of alternative care because the coronary heartdisease is a lifestyle disease. Complementary care providers willrecommend and guide the patient through other alternative therapies.Most of the care will focus on dietary and lifestyle changes such asavoidance of food with high cholesterol, consumption of more fruits,and decreasing the indulgence in alcohol. The care should focus onexercise and meditation as increased levels of stress may compoundthe disease.

Importanceof the course to the nursing practice

Thecomplementary and alternative methods topic is very important in thenursing practice because patients need extra care apart fromconventional medicine. In addition to that, the topic emphasizes theimportance of the patient-practitioner relationship in the healingprocess (Micozzi, 2010). Nursing practitioners have to focus onimproving their relationship with patients to improve outcomes. Themodern way of life has led to many lifestyle diseases that requireholistic nursing practice and therefore the nursing profession can becomplete with some basic knowledge of alternative methods oftreatment. In this regards, the course has availed comprehensiveaspects of alternative and complementary medicine, which will shapefuture review on patient needs or intervention approaches.

Moreover,most healthcare organizations are in the process of adoptingintegrative systems, and it can always be a great challenge fornursing practitioners to work in such an environment without a properunderstanding of the importance of complementary and alternativemethods (Micozzi,2010). Furthermore, the topic is very important for thosepractitioners that want to specialize in complementary medicinebecause it equips one with the necessary knowledge on the availablealternative methods of treatment. The course has shown CAM modalitiesas highly appropriate and significant approaches in treatmentpractices thus, given illustrated that conventional practices arenot always the best. Moreover, CAM modalities are holistic in naturehence, I have gathered new knowledge on their importance inaddressing patients’ needs.


AmericanHolistic Health Association.(2016). Principlesof Holistic Medicine.Retrieved on 20 May 2015 fromhttp://ahha.org/selfhelp-articles/principles-of-holistic-medicine/

Micozzi,M. (2010). Fundamentalsof Complementary and AlternativeMedicine.New York: Elsevier Health Sciences.

Willison,K. D., Lindsay, S., Taylor, M., Schroeder, H., &amp Andrews, G. J.(2013). Complementary and integrative medicine, aging and chronicillness: towards an interprofessional approach in primary healthcare.&nbspPrimaryHealth Care and Complementary and Integrative Medicine: Practice andResearch,35.