Complementary Therapy Center Opens At Cooley Dickinson Hospital

NORTHAMPTON – At Cooley Dickinson Hospital in Northampton, healing is about the mind and spirit, as well as the body. To promote overall wellness, the hospital has opened up its Center for Complementary Therapies to the public.

Located outside the Childbirth Center on the second floor, the center first opened in 2004 to meet the needs of pregnant women and women who had just given birth at Cooley Dickinson Hospital’s Childbirth Center. Over the past year, the center has expanded its services to offer therapeutic massage, pre- and post-natal massage and Reiki treatments to patients, pre- or post-natal women, employees, physicians and volunteers and members of the wider community.

“What we’re offering is another spoke in the wheel of healing,” says Bridget Griffin, coordinator of the center. “We’re providing integrative services, another modality of health and well-being. We’re treating the whole person.”

Griffin says offering integrative services in a hospital setting is becoming a trend across New England; organizations such as Hartford Hospital in Connecticut and Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center in New York City, for instance, are offering alternative healing methods.

The American Hospital Association (AHA) reported in December 2005 that the number of hospitals offering complementary and alternative medicine services rose from 8{06cf2b9696b159f874511d23dbc893eb1ac83014175ed30550cfff22781411e5} in 1998 to 17.9{06cf2b9696b159f874511d23dbc893eb1ac83014175ed30550cfff22781411e5} in 2003.

The national government is also recognizing the movement; the National Institute of Health has created a National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicines.

CDH’s Center for Complementary Therapies is dedicated to promoting healing through the use of therapeutic massage and Reiki, an ancient eastern technique of working to balance the energy in the body. Practitioners are licensed, certified, trained and experienced and conduct individual assessments prior to each appointment.

“There is a wide variety of ways for people to take care of themselves,” Griffin says, adding that the creation of the center helps to give people an awareness of their role in achieving and maintaining good health.

The benefits of therapeutic massage range from promoting relaxation to reducing aches and pains and stimulating the circulatory and immune systems. Reiki can increase circulation, stimulate lymphatic flow, increase relaxation and encourage deeper respiration.

In the future, Griffin hopes to expand the Center for Complementary Therapies to offer acupuncture and self-hypnosis for surgery or other procedures.

Fees for the center are as follows:

• $65 per hour for therapeutic massage ($165 discount package: three, one-hour massages)
• $65 per hour for prenatal and postpartum massage ($165 discount package: three, one-hour massages)
• $32 pervisit for therapeutic massage for inpatients
• $55 per hour for therapeutic massage for employees, physicians and volunteers ($150 discount package: three, one-hour massages)

• $55 per hour; $150 discount package.

For more information, or for gift certificates, call (413) 582-2424 or E-mailbridget_griffin@cooley-dickinson.org.

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