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Lions Roar : January 2011
SHAMBHALA SUN JANUARY 2011 61 the results of the study were impressive. use of prescription opiates went down by nearly 60 percent among participants in the integrative program. this, Pelletier points out, has significant economic consequences. employees cannot work on the assembly line if they are taking prescription opiates, even if their pain is con- trolled. a 60 percent reduction in use translates into a huge return to work and saved money on disability costs. the study has already had a big ripple effect at ford. the approach is being replicated in all of their health clinics, and ford’s insurance companies are cov- ering the costs, thanks to the power of ford’s demands. Pelletier was surprised to find that the single best predictor of improvement was participants’ use of a guided meditation cD, the component they thought might be the least appealing to the plant workers. use of the cD predicted significant improvements in back pain-related disability, job performance, and physical and mental well-being. “We went back six months later, and twice as many workers were using the meditation cD than any other mo- dality for back pain.” findings like this demonstrate the feasibility of bringing less conventional modalities into communities that may not currently have access to or familiarity with them. Programs like cHIP are also building the evidence base required to demonstrate the economic feasibility of integrative medicine. at the 2009 IoM summit on Integrative Medicine, Pelletier presented an analysis of the cost effectiveness of integrative medicine inter- ventions in the workplace. He found 153 relevant reports of work- site interventions, all of which showed positive health outcomes and related benefits in short-term disability, long-term disability, People are able to make lifestyle changes because they feel better so quickly. Joy of living is a much better motivator than fear of dying. Dr. Dean ornIsH ➢ page 88 Group meditation practice at Duke Integrative Medicine. PHotocourtesyofDukeIntegratIveMeDIcIne