Well-founded arguments

The DAK (German General Medical Insurance) covers with immediate effect the costs of acupuncture for pregnancy problems administered by specially qualified doctors.

This method of therapy is a sensible alternative to medication in pregnancy care. In the eyes of Helmut Rüdinger – Vice-president of the German Medical Council for Acupuncture – prescribing drugs for a pregnant woman is a tight-rope walk between health of the mother and possible consequences for the unborn child. Due to fear for possible side-effects, many women refuse to take any medication during pregnancy. Acupuncture gives the mothers-to-be the possibility of overcoming health problems without endangering their child. For example this could be backache, continual vomiting or the pelvic position of the child.

An expert assessment by the health insurance medical department in Niedersachsen (Germany) confirms that acupuncture can help particularly with excessive morning-sickness. From the harmless morning nausea which affects almost one in two pregnant women, a real illness can develop: so-called Hyperemesis – excessive vomiting with a dangerous loss of liquid and minerals. In the end, it often means admission to hospital is necessary. Hospitalisation of these women can be avoided when the acupuncture treatment is effective.

It is of particular importance for the DAK that the quality of this new service is assured, because of the immense differences in the training of acupuncturists. That is why it only covers the costs of treatment from doctors who have sufficient qualifications in the field of acupuncture. This includes at least 140 hours training. The DAK reimburses 25 euros per session.

Source: DAK Magazine Fit, 3/2003

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