Americans See Alternative Therapies as Safe and Effective

Author: The Harris Poll
Published: 2016/05/12 - Updated: 2020/10/20
Contents: Summary - Main - Related Publications

Synopsis: Health and Healing in America - Younger generations more readily embrace alternative treatments than their older counterparts. When it comes to how likely Americans are to use alternative options for various conditions, a majority of all adults (64%) are likely to use these options to treat physical pain... Majorities believe chiropractic (67%) massage therapy (53%) should be covered by insurance, nearly 50% say same of acupuncture (48%), including 6 in 10 Matures (61%).

Main Digest

For many, the term "healthcare" likely leads to visions of doctors and prescriptions, but for some it can mean so much more. Alternative treatments - also known as non-conventional or naturopathic therapies, which include things like chiropractic care, massage therapy, and herbal remedies - are used in place of or in addition to conventional therapies. Overall, younger people are more willing to embrace these alternative therapies and to use them more widely. In fact, one in four Millennials (25%) are using alternative therapies more than conventional options, compared to just 5% of Matures.

However, regardless of age, Americans are keeping an open mind when it comes to less conventional options.

Even more strikingly, majorities think some alternative treatments, like chiropractic and massage therapy, should be covered by insurance - more than actually have used them. These findings appear to suggest an expanded consciousness on what health and healing mean to Americans - not just prescription medicine and doctors, but also having greater access to techniques that have been used for centuries to make people better.

"Though alternative treatments often predate modern medicine, consumer interest in these treatments today is bolstered by two important consumer trends: finding affordable care in a high deductible world, and seeking natural approaches to pain and disease management," adds Jennifer Colamonico, Vice President of Nielsen Healthcare. "As these trends are likely to continue for some time, we anticipate more consumers will consider and try alternative treatments as well as other types of self-care to achieve health and wellness goals."

These are some of the results of The Harris PollĀ® of 2,252 U.S. adults surveyed online between December 9 and 14, 2015. Complete results of this study can be found here.

Current Use and Perceptions

When it comes to how likely Americans are to use alternative options for various conditions, a majority of all adults (64%) are likely to use these options to treat physical pain, and Millennials and Gen Xers are particularly likely to consider such alternatives for things like addiction (60% and 57%, respectively) and mental health (57% each) as well.

What Should be Covered by Insurance?

Majorities believe chiropractic (67%) and massage therapy (53%) should be covered by insurance. Nearly half say the same of acupuncture (48%), including about six in ten Matures (61%).

For the rest of the alternative therapies presented, less than one third think each should be covered by insurance:

Politics of Alternative Health

In this political season, it is interesting to note that Independents are more likely to use alternative therapies as often as conventional therapies (23% vs. 13% Republican), and are specifically more likely than their Republican counterparts to use things like meditation (24% vs. 13% Republicans), massage therapy (34% vs. 26% Republicans) and herbal medicines (41% vs. 33% Republicans).

Methodology

This Harris Poll was conducted online, in English, within the United States between December 9 and 14, 2015 among 2,252 adults. Figures for age, sex, race/ethnicity, education, region and household income were weighted where necessary to bring them into line with their actual proportions in the population. Propensity score weighting was also used to adjust for respondents' propensity to be online.

All sample surveys and polls, whether or not they use probability sampling, are subject to multiple sources of error which are most often not possible to quantify or estimate, including sampling error, coverage error, error associated with nonresponse, error associated with question wording and response options, and post-survey weighting and adjustments. Therefore, The Harris Poll avoids the words "margin of error" as they are misleading. All that can be calculated are different possible sampling errors with different probabilities for pure, unweighted, random samples with 100% response rates. These are only theoretical because no published polls come close to this ideal.

Respondents for this survey were selected from among those who have agreed to participate in Harris Poll surveys. The data have been weighted to reflect the composition of the adult population. Because the sample is based on those who agreed to participate in our panel, no estimates of theoretical sampling error can be calculated.

These statements conform to the principles of disclosure of the National Council on Public Polls.

Attribution/Source(s):

This quality-reviewed publication pertaining to our Alternative Medicine section was selected for circulation by the editors of Disabled World due to its likely interest to our disability community readers. Though the content may have been edited for style, clarity, or length, the article "Americans See Alternative Therapies as Safe and Effective" was originally written by The Harris Poll, and submitted for publishing on 2016/05/12 (Edit Update: 2020/10/20). Should you require further information or clarification, The Harris Poll can be contacted at the theharrispoll.com website. Disabled World makes no warranties or representations in connection therewith.

📢 Discover Related Topics


👍 Share This Information To:
𝕏.com Facebook Reddit

Page Information, Citing and Disclaimer

Disabled World is an independent disability community founded in 2004 to provide disability news and information to people with disabilities, seniors, their family and/or carers. You can connect with us on social media such as X.com and our Facebook page.

Cite This Page (APA): The Harris Poll. (2016, May 12). Americans See Alternative Therapies as Safe and Effective. Disabled World. Retrieved April 16, 2024 from www.disabled-world.com/medical/alternative/alternative-therapy.php

Permalink: <a href="https://www.disabled-world.com/medical/alternative/alternative-therapy.php">Americans See Alternative Therapies as Safe and Effective</a>: Health and Healing in America - Younger generations more readily embrace alternative treatments than their older counterparts.

Disabled World provides general information only. Materials presented are never meant to substitute for qualified professional medical care. Any 3rd party offering or advertising does not constitute an endorsement.