Seniors' Medical Costs
by 70 Percent with TM
Diagram: 70 percent reduction of Health
care expenditures after 5 years of TM compared to non-TM control group. During
9 years before TM was commenced there was no significant difference in health
expenditure between the two groups, consisting of 163 subjects each of age 65+.
Elderly people who
practice the Transcendental Meditation technique may drastically reduce
their medical costs, according to findings presented by faculty member Robert
Herron at the 91st Annual Canadian Public Health Association Conference last
month in Ottawa, Canada.
The study found that 163
people from Quebec - aged 65 and over - reduced payments to physicians by a
cumulative 70 percent during the five-year period after they learned the
Transcendental Meditation technique.
The retrospective study
evaluated a sample of 326 Quebec health insurance enrollees - 163 who
practiced the Transcendental Meditation technique and 163 who did not. Using
statistical analysis, researchers compared the groups' expenses for treatment
by physicians, both during the nine-year period before the Transcendental
Meditation technique was introduced and for five years afterward. Data for
the study was provided by the Regie de l'Assurance-Maladie du Quebec, the
province's health insurance provider. Figures were adjusted for inflation
using the Canadian government's Consumer Price Index.
The study's findings were
dramatic. Researchers found 70 percent cumulative expenditure reduction
for the group who practiced the Transcendental Meditation technique for five
years. In contrast, the control group's expenses continued to rise. Both
groups showed steadily rising payments to physicians during the nine-year
period before the meditating group learned the Transcendental Meditation
findings suggest that there is a relationship between the Transcendental
Meditation technique and improved mental and physical health for senior
said Dr. Herron, lead author of the study. "The proven health benefits
of this preventive technique could have significant implications for the
reduction of medical costs for people of all ages."
This research is an
extension of previous studies of the effect of the Transcendental Meditation
technique on aging. One study, for example, showed that a group of
individuals who had been practicing the Transcendental Meditation program for
more than five years were physiologically 12 years younger than their
chronological age, based on a standard measure of "biological age"
that evaluates blood pressure, near-point vision, and auditory discrimination.
Source: The Review, Nov. 2000, MUM, Fairfield, Iowa, By Christine Schrum
Herron RE, Cavanaugh K. (2005);
“Can the Transcendental Meditation Program Reduce Medical
Expenditures of Older People?” Journal of Social
Behavior and Personality, 17(1), 415–442.
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