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Prof Case Manag. 2014 May-Jun;19(3):113-23; quiz 124-5. doi: 10.1097/NCM.0000000000000025.

Elders' use of folk medicine and complementary and alternative therapies: an integrative review with implications for case managers.

Author information

1
Kay Sackett, EdD, RN, is Associate Professor of Nursing. She's held a variety of positions in academia, hospital administration, and worked internationally for United Nations/UNESCO. As graduate faculty, she teaches online courses for master's and DNP students. Her interests include health care informatics, complementary and alternative medicine, evidence-based practice, and case management. Melondie Carter, DSN, RN, is Associate Professor of Nursing and Assistant Director of the Office of Health Promotion and Wellness. She provides leadership in the WellBama outreach screening and health, coaching program, and has 20 years of teaching experience. Marietta Stanton, PhD, RN, is Professor of Nursing and former Assistant Dean of Graduate Programs. Her interests include case management, Complementary and alternative medicine, research with veterans, and distance learning. She is currently enrolled in a Family Nurse Practitioner Program.

Abstract

PURPOSE OF STUDY:

The purpose of this study was to determine the prevalence of complementary and alternative medicine (CAM), folk medicine, and other nontraditional therapy use by the elderly population.

PRIMARY PRACTICE SETTING:

For all case managers who coordinate health care for the elderly as they transition from one setting to another and participate in health promotion and prevention activities.

METHODOLOGY AND SAMPLE:

A computerized database search of MEDLINE, CINAHL, ProQuest, and PsycINFO was completed before writing the integrative review. Six hundred ninety-seven abstracts were identified. Forty-five articles were further screened. Twenty-five articles met the criteria for inclusion.

RESULTS:

The integrative review is composed of 25 articles. Support for folk medicine and CAM use by older adults is located at Levels 5 and 6 of Melynk and Fine-Overholt's Hierarchy of Evidence.

IMPLICATIONS FOR CASE MANAGEMENT PRACTICE:

Folk medicine and CAM are used by the elderly for self-care purposes. A combination of both nontraditional and traditional medical interventions is used by the elderly. Although the choice to use folk medicine and CAM seems to transcend culture, the specific therapies chosen often emerge from the individual's cultural or ethnic heritage. Traditional health care providers may be unaware of elders' use of CAM or folk medicine alternatives. Case managers as coordinators of care across the health continuum are in a unique position to encourage, support, and enhance the use of folk medicine and CAM that complements traditional medical interventions for the elderly.

PMID:
24705522
DOI:
10.1097/NCM.0000000000000025
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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