BMC Complementary and Alternative Medicine

, 12:50

First online:

Open Access This content is freely available online to anyone, anywhere at any time.

An investigation of multidisciplinary complex health care interventions – steps towards an integrative treatment model in the rehabilitation of People with Multiple Sclerosis

  • Lasse SkovgaardAffiliated withThe Danish MS SocietyDepartment of Public Health Research, University of Copenhagen Email author 
  • , Liv BjerreAffiliated withThe Danish MS Society
  • , Niels HaahrAffiliated withThe Danish MS Society
  • , Charlotte PatersonAffiliated withInstitute of Health Services Research, Peninsula Medical School, University of Exeter
  • , Laila LaunsøAffiliated withThe National Research Centre on Complementary and Alternative Medicine (NAFKAM), University of Tromsø
  • , Finn BoesenAffiliated withThe Danish MS Hospital
  • , Michael NissenAffiliated withThe Danish MS Hospital
  • , Mai-Britt OttesenAffiliated withThe Danish MS Hospital
  • , Christina MortensenAffiliated withThe Danish MS Hospital
    • , Anette OlsenAffiliated withThe Danish MS Hospital
    • , Søren BorchAffiliated withThe Danish MS Society
    • , Birthe K MortensenAffiliated withThe Danish MS Society
    • , Gudrun Aa RasmussenAffiliated withThe Danish MS Society
    • , Kirsten SietamAffiliated withThe Danish MS Society
    • , Frank StaalkjærAffiliated withThe Danish MS Society
    • , Karin PedersenAffiliated withThe Danish MS Society
    • , Kirsten SøndermarkAffiliated withThe Danish MS Hospital



The Danish Multiple Sclerosis Society initiated a large-scale bridge building and integrative treatment project to take place from 2004–2010 at a specialized Multiple Sclerosis (MS) hospital. In this project, a team of five conventional health care practitioners and five alternative practitioners was set up to work together in developing and offering individualized treatments to 200 people with MS. The purpose of this paper is to present results from the six year treatment collaboration process regarding the development of an integrative treatment model.


The collaborative work towards an integrative treatment model for people with MS, involved six steps: 1) Working with an initial model 2) Unfolding the different treatment philosophies 3) Discussing the elements of the Intervention-Mechanism-Context-Outcome-scheme (the IMCO-scheme) 4) Phrasing the common assumptions for an integrative MS program theory 5) Developing the integrative MS program theory 6) Building the integrative MS treatment model. The model includes important elements of the different treatment philosophies represented in the team and thereby describes a common understanding of the complexity of the courses of treatment.


An integrative team of practitioners has developed an integrative model for combined treatments of People with Multiple Sclerosis. The model unites different treatment philosophies and focuses on process-oriented factors and the strengthening of the patients’ resources and competences on a physical, an emotional and a cognitive level.


CAM Multiple Sclerosis Interdisciplinary health care Program theory Intervention theory Integrated health care