About the APA Caucus on Complementary, Alternative, & Integrative Care

In May 2004, the American Psychiatric Association established a special Caucus on complementary, alternative and integrative approaches in mental health care.

Caucus members are psychiatrists with a broad range of clinical and research interests in non-conventional therapies. These interests include the evidence-based use of herbs, natural supplements, mind-body therapies, and alternative medical systems.

Despite the diversity of our backgrounds and perspectives, we share a common vision of healing that attends to the whole person–body, mind, and spirit–as well as to environmental and lifestyle factors that affect psychological well-being.

Broadly, the goals of the Caucus include:

Educating psychiatrists and other health professionals on safe, evidence-based use of complementary and alternative therapies in mental health care.

Gathering data to characterize and quantify psychiatrists’ beliefs and practices regarding complementary and alternative therapies.

Establishing a research agenda to prioritize those complementary or alternative modalities showing most potential benefit in the treatment of psychiatric conditions.