In her welcoming statement at the Medical Yoga Symposium, meeting director Linda Lang emphasized that, “…we are here for much more than the art and science of yoga….we have come to see and hear some of [the] most prominent visionaries and pioneers of therapeutic yoga and integrative medicine.”
Dean Ornish, MD, founder and president of the Preventive Medicine Research Institute and Clinical Professor of Medicine at University of California, San Francisco, referred to growing scientific outcomes supporting of the application of yoga in clinical environments. For Ornish, “Part of the value of science is that we find we have more choices.” These choices include the ability to provide yoga at a growing number of healing institutions, and the option for medical students to learn about the application of yoga in school. Presenters were able to show how yoga is beginning to be accepted as part of pre- and post-surgical protocols as well as a key component in rehabilitative programs promoting lifestyle changes.
With continued research to demonstrate the effects of yoga on health care costs, Miller believes that insurance companies will recognize the cost benefits of yoga and yoga therapy and offer reimbursement for yoga interventions. He states, “It's only a matter of time and the patience, persistence, and perseverance of yoga practitioners and organizations in bringing this to fruition.”
Veronica Zador, B.Sc., E-RYT 500, is passionate promoter of yoga’s application in medicine. She is president emeritus of the International Association of Yoga Therapists, vice-president emeritus of Yoga Alliance and the Standards Committee of Yoga Alliance. She is a member of the Values task force of the National Education Dialogue to Advance Integrated Health Care (NED), serves on the editorial board of the Academic Consortium for Complementary and Alternative Health Care (ACCAHC), and coordinated the first three IAYT Symposiums on Yoga Therapy and Research (SYTAR). As president and school director of Yoga Developments, RYS 200/500, Veronica helped initiate and launch the Wayne State University School of Medicine Co-Curricular Program in Yoga Therapy.