Volume 94, Issue 59

Tuesday, January 9, 2001


York strikes partial win - Contract faculty back to work

New course opens door to alternatives

Cigarettes get new warnings

Teacher's college applicants down 27 per cent

Power outage turns elevators into traps


New course opens door to alternatives

By Chris Lackner
Gazette Staff

A new course offered by Western's faculty of health sciences is teaching students the alternate route to better health.

Ann Schwitzer, a professor in the faculty of health sciences, and Don Morrow, a professor of Kinesiology, recently began teaching a new course in the faculty of health sciences called Alternative and Complementary Health.

Schwitzer said the new half course, which began last week, will cover alternative health treatments such as homeopathy, yoga, chiropractic, herbal medicine, acupuncture and naturopathy.

"When working with a client or a patient, health workers need to be aware of the full extent of health problems and potential treatments," she said.

Morrow said the new course is at its 130 student capacity, while 30 to 40 students remain on the waiting list.

"One of my hopes is that future courses can offer more hands on experience, so people can get their start towards certification in some fields of alternative medicine," he added.

William Brown, a doctor of acupuncture at the North London Chinese Medicine, Acupuncture and Therapy Clinic, said courses such as the one Western is offering help legitimize alternative medicine.

"These sort of courses are long overdue," Brown noted. "I feel that alternative health treatments can have a complementary place with Western [medical] care. They're effective. That's why they've lasted."

"It's great to see a public interest in complementary alternative medicine," said Catherine Gabriel, spokesperson for the Health Action Network Society. "More than one third of Canadians have used alternative therapies. They're here to stay."

Gabriel said the recent academic and public interest in alternative medicine has been consumer driven. "A practitioner's viewpoint has to change with people's wants and needs," he added.

Meredith Mcclenaghan, vice president academic of Western's bachelor of health science student council, agreed that the new course is in high demand within the faculty.

"I think it's an integral part of the program," she said, adding the course provides a complete perspective on personal health, which includes mind, spirit and body.

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