A national group working toward inclusion of complementary health care in the U.S. health system announced today, Aug. 3, an amendment to a U.S. Senate health-care bill that adds “licensed complementary and alternative medicine providers, and integrated health care practitioners” to the definition of the U.S. health care work force.

“This is a huge move. This is our seat at the table,” said Integrated Healthcare Policy Consortium (IHPC) Executive Director (and former MASSAGE Magazine columnist) Janet Kahn, Ph.D., in a public announcement. “We are currently in an historic period of health care reform, and IHPC has been working with key Senators and their staff for the past 18 months.”

The amendment to the Affordable Health Choices Act was brought forward by Senator Bernie Sanders of Vermont, who is on the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions (HELP) committee, one of two Senate panels charged with drafting national health-care legislation.

Kahn also encourages complementary health care practitioners to use the IHPC’s web-based tool to contact representatives with feedback and comments. That tool is located here:

http://capwiz.com/ihpc/issues/alert/?alertid=13823541&PROCESS=Take+Action

“The day this amendment passed I got an email from one of Senator Sanders’ aides saying, ‘There was unanimous support … So I think your message has gotten to all the members of the HELP committee, Democrats, Republicans and Independent,” Kahn added.

“Integrated health care has always been a non-partisan issue. This huge success for integrated health care and for the health of all Americans will become the platform from which we build,” she said.

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