Dr. Martha Herbert Talks About New Directions for Research

To advance research in holistic healing disciplines, we need to develop research methodologies that are appropriate for these disciplines. In these videos, Dr. Martha Herbert, a pediatric neurologist at Harvard Medical School and board member of the Foundation, discusses the opportunities that lie ahead for this research.

Watch these videos to hear Dr. Herbert talk about:

  • Holistic practitioners need new research tools to document their successes. They need to no longer be hindered or intimidated by the limited conventional models of research.
  • The effectiveness of holistic medicine often cannot be well-documented through the traditional randomized placebo-controlled trial (RCT). This is because the RCT starts with the assumption that patients can be standardized. This is not true–every patient is unique.
  • In holistic medicine, treatments constantly adjust to the individual. We need research methods that take this into account. For example:
    • If you standardize the measurements you take, and you gather data on enough subjects, you can get statistically significant findings without standardizing the research subject.
    • You also need to track a much wider range of outcomes, such as quality of life, and not simply focus on changes in a single chief complaint.