ST. LOUIS ( -- Employees at the Veterans Affairs got to try a new approach to healthcare on Saturday.

Acupuncture, Tai Chi, hypnosis and other methods were part of the VA Employee Whole Health Wellness Retreat. 

"I think it's a fantastic concept and a great way to model healthcare," Susan Boyle said. "I think it's what our veterans need instead of looking at them as being sick individuals."

READ: Veteran shares inspiring mindfulness journey that helped him lose 50 pounds

Boyle is a nurse coordinator and works with veterans who have chronic heart and lung conditions.

She tried acupuncture for her knee pain for the first time on Saturday but was already thinking about how it could help her patients.

"I'm very interested in seeing how that could help our veterans reduce the use of opioids," Boyle said.

St. Louis is one of 18 cities helping to spearhead the shift in healthcare. 

"A lot of times we think of healthcare as 'I'm sick I go to the doctor.' But really, Whole Health is about shifting that focus to what's important to you, what brings you joy and really building any kind of medical care around that," Veteran Health Education Coordinator Emily Ligon said.

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