CAM Enters Mainstream On Wave of Consumer Demand.
Alternative medicine has grown explosively since 1993, when David Eisenberg, M.D., lit a fuse underneath the mainstream medical establishment by publishing his landmark study in the New England Journal of Medicine. The study revealed that more than one-third of Americans surveyed had used alternative medicine in the past year, spending $xx.x billion on products and services in 1990, more than the total amount spent on visits to conventional medical practitioners.
In 1998, new data by Eisenberg and others demonstrated that consumer usage of alternative medicine is still growing. The portion of the population visiting an alternative medicine practitioner has risen from xx% in 1990 to xx% in 1997, according to the Eisenberg survey of more than 2,000 adult consumers. In the same period, total visits grew xx% from xxx million to xxx million, more a function of new patients than increased frequency. Expenditures on services were estimated at $xx.x billion in 1997 (up xx% from $xx.x billion in 1990) with at least $xx.x billion paid out-of-pocket. NBJ's current estimate of revenues in U.S. alternative health services, based on surveys of practitioners and their associations, stands at $xx.x billion in 1998 (excluding osteopaths which would add almost another $xx billion), in line with the Eisenberg estimates. Eisenberg also uses a less conservative cost-per-visit method to extrapolate a $xx.x-billion alternative medicine services market in 1997, with another $xx.x billion in high-dosage vitamins ($x.x billion), herbal therapies ($x.x billion), diet products $x.x billion) and books, classes and equipment ($x.x billion). While the exact numbers may be a subject of debate the dramatic recent growth is not. There also remains some disagreement on whether we are just on the beginning of the upswing or if the next new batch of alternative health customers may not be so easily recruited.
Excerpted form the January 1999 issue of Nutrition Business Journal, 24 pages of detailed market data and strategic analysis of the nutrition industry and it's relationship with CAM.
Subscribe to NBJ and receive the industry's latest market data & strategic analysis every month. A subscription to NBJ is the equivalent of having your own in-house research deptartment!
Copyright © 2007 Penton Media, Inc.
tel: (303) 998.9399, fax: (303) 385.0046. All rights reserved. This website, or any part, may not be duplicated, stored in a retrieval system or transmitted in any form without prior written permission of the publisher. Unauthorized use of this information is illegal. Disclaimer: Although NBJ has made every effort to be accurate, errors may appear and are unintentional.