Belleruth Naplarstek on how to get insurers to cover mid body interventions HealthJourneys founder Belleruth Naparstek, LISW, BCD offers a common sense perspective on how to approach insurers for coverage of mind body therapies. In How to Persuade Insurers to

Belleruth Naplarstek on how to get insurers to cover mid-body interventions 

HealthJourneys founder Belleruth Naparstek, LISW, BCD offers a common sense perspective on how to approach insurers for coverage of mind-body therapies. In How to Persuade Insurers to Use Mind-Body Tools, she notes key research breakthroughs that helped advance coverage in that field. She also sites early adopter Kaiser Permanente which offers 20 of her firm’s products to members for free. Kaiser anticipates cost savings associated with patients using these tools.

Integrative practice-related firms Standard Process, American Specialty Health, Massage Envy, others make Inc. 5000 list of fastest growing firms 

Recent releases from whole foods natural products manufacturer Standard Process and managed CAM and wellness firm American Specialty Health (ASH) each boast of making the Inc. 5000 list of fastest growing firms during 2008-2010. To qualify, firms must have turned at least $2-million in annual revenues in 2010. Standard Process ranked 4250 with a 25% growth rate to $108.8-million. ASH is 4421 on 20% growth to $155.7 million. A quick scan of the list of healthcare firms also turns up:  

  • #97 – Pure Formulas, 2679% growth to $9.9-million
  • #120 – TF Supplements, 2231% growth to $10.2-million
  • #1035 – ChiroOne Wellness Centers, 292% growth to $44.9-million
  • #1320 – ChiroNet, 218% growth tio $7.4-million
  • #1521 – Nutricap Labs, 182% growth to $16.4-million
  • #2305 – Massage Envy, 105% to $39.4-million
  • #2518 – Deseret Biologicals, 93% growth to $3.7-million
  • #3510 – General Nutrition Centers, 49% growth to $1.8-billion

This list of companies on the list that may be viewed as being in the integrative practice space is not conclusive. Other supplement firms are certainly present. A number of fitness and wellness related firms are also on the list.  

Comment: The list, available here, can be scanned by both industry sector and individual company. Viewing it provides an interesting vantage point on what is happening in health care. The bigger the firm was in 2008, the tougher it is to continue at that high growth rate. This speaks well of the continued business success of Standard process, ASH, General Nutrition, and Massage Envy. 

Alternative Medicine re-launched as a bi-monthly consumer magazine by Innovision, owner of ATHM and IMCJ  

Innovision, the publishers of the peer-reviewed Alternative Therapies in Health and Medicine and Integrative Medicine: A Clinician’s Journal has re-launched Alternative Medicine, a consumer magazine. The gold-plated website ( features the first issue here. The editor is Craig Gustafson. I was approached by the publishers to consider a regular column for consumers on CAM politics. My first column is entitled: If Your Single Issue is Integrative Health – Obama’s Reform is Bold. Take a look.  

Comment: The title seems a throw-back to the pre-Eisenberg era before “integration” of alternatives and “complementing” conventional medicine entered the public discussion. We’ve seen the term making a comeback this summer. David Freedman favored it in his influential June-July Atlantic feature. The term was back in the mainstream media in as big way more recently with the widespread coverage of the surveys of consumers on “alternative therapies” and of healthcare workers noted elsewhere in this Round-up. “Integrative medicine” appears not yet to have sufficiently penetrated conventional care delivery for the concept to have meaning to most patients and consumers. To them, 2011 is 1993. Choice is still about an alternative. I recall the reason Oxford Health Plans used this phrase to name their historic coverage in 1996. Their market research found that “alternative medicine” speaks to their customer better than “CAM” or “complementary and alternative medicine” or “natural health” or “integrative medicine.” So the title, despite being retro, may well be right. The bigger question for Innovision is whether any hard-copy magazine can catch on.