CAM > FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS ABOUT OXFORD'S CAM PROGRAM

Frequently Asked Questions about Oxford's CAM Program

Q. Why and how did Oxford decide to offer complementary and alternative medicine (CAM) products and services?

A. A marketing survey was performed in 1996. It showed that one-third of Oxford Members were already using some form of CAM. The survey also showed that almost three-quarters of the large groups enrolled in an Oxford product were interested in offering health plans with CAM services to their employees.

Q. How did Oxford determine which complementary and alternative medicine products and practices to cover?

A. Complementary and alternative medicine is highly regional. Oxford simply took a look at the top six provider types reported in the above referenced marketing survey.

Q. What types of complementary and alternative medicine (CAM) providers can Oxford Members access?

A. Through Oxford's CAM program, Members have access to:

  • Chiropractors
  • Acupuncturists
  • Naturopaths (in CT only)
  • Yoga Instructors
  • Massage Therapists
  • Nutritionists

Q. How many complementary and alternative medicine (CAM) providers does Oxford have in its network?

A. Oxford has approximately 2,400 CAM providers in its network.

Q. How long has Oxford had a CAM Program?

A. Oxford's CAM Program became available to commercial and Medicare Members on January 1, 1997. Oxford was one of the first health insurers to offer its Members access to a credentialed network of complementary and alternative medicine providers.

Q. Can any Oxford Member use Oxford's CAM Program?

A. Yes. The CAM Program is open to any Oxford Member. Members can access Oxford's CAM network in one of four ways.

Q. How does Oxford select complementary and alternative medicine (CAM) providers for its network?

A. All of Oxford's CAM providers are credentialed. In order to be credentialed, specialists must meet the following criteria:

  • Meet state licensing requirements
  • Meet clinical experience requirements
  • Commit to continuing their education in specialty areas
  • Have specialty certification, where needed
  • Have minimum malpractice insurance levels
  • Be credentialed every two years

Q. Where can I find additional information on complementary and alternative medicine (CAM)?

A. The National Institute of Health's National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine (NCCAM) has information about a variety of CAM treatments and procedures. For information on vitamins, herbs and supplements, the "International Bibliographic Information on Dietary Supplements" (IBIDS) is a good source of information. There are also a host of books on the topic including, "Alternative Medicine for Dummies" by leading CAM expert Dr. James Dillard. Click here for the special offer for Oxford Members.

References:

  1. Dillard, James. "How to Choose an Alternative Practitioner." 1999. http://onhealth.webmd.com/alternative/columnist/item,55566.asp (23 June 2000).
  2. Dillard, James and Terra Ziporyn. Alternative Medicine for Dummies. (Foster City: IDG Books Worldwide, Inc., 1998).
  3. Eisenberg, David M., et al. "Trends in alternative medicine use in the United States, 1990-1997." Journal of American Medical Association, Vol. 280, November 11, 1998, pp. 1569-75.
  4. Flint, Vivekan. "How to Use Alternative and Complementary Medicine." 2000. http://webmd.lycos.com/content/dmk/dmk_article_58289 (16 June 2000).
  5. "Frequently Asked Questions." http://nccam.nih.gov/nccam/fcp/faq/ (16 June 2000).



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