Principles Project

Defining the Principles of Complementary & Alternative Medicine:
(A project for discussion & documentation)

Although they are part of the indigenous healthcare system in certain parts of the world, such as the orient, systems of CAM have come to be defined predominantly by their political and social position outside the mainstream of conventional medical science, on which healthcare worldwide is based. In practice they are identified by their techniques of treatment and are therefore perceived as isolated modalities with little in common. At the RCCM we believe many CAM systems have common precepts by which they may be defined. It is important for future research and initiatives towards integrated healthcare that these should be clarified. This will help to foster better understanding for both healthcare professionals of all persuasions and for their patients.

We have initiated a debate by inviting selected individuals within the fields of CAM and the Social Sciences to comment on a document (click here) outlining what are generally held to be the principle philosophical foundations of CAM. We would now like to invite members of the CAM researcher network and other interested individuals to add their comments. For a report of a workshop held in Exeter, Devon, on 17th November 2004 at which these ideas were discussed further, click here.

It is hoped that a consensus view might eventually be published for the guidance of healthcare professionals and the public, also form the basis of a conference. All comments and suggestions should be e-mailed to Roger Newman Turner at

R Newman Turner, ND, DO, BAc
Former RCCM Trustee
March 2004

Last updated on16 January, 2012 - 18:05
Created on23 December, 2010 - 17:13