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Brief Notes: Unity & Chiropractors, Nurse-Led UN Effort, Pizzorno/WebMD, Talk on CAM Economics PDF Print E-mail
Written by John Weeks   

Brief Notes: Unifying Chiropractors, Nurse-Led Nightingale-UN Initiatives, Pizzorno Leads Integrative Medicine at WebMD, Community Acupuncture Network and CAM Business

Summary: Individual chiropractors and the Congress of State Chiropractic Associations call for merger of the ACA and ICA  ... Nurses pushing the United Nations via the Nightingale Campaign to make 2011-2020 the UN Decade for a Healthy World ... Join holistic nursing at their June meeting ... WebMD taps Joseph Pizzorno, ND, as their integrative medicine lead ... Access a fascinating, if controversial, taped talk by Community Acupuncture Network co-founder Lisa Rohleder, LAc on the economics of acupuncture practice and their delivery to "Middle America" ...
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for inclusion in a future Your Comments article.

1.    Powerful Call for Unity Among Top Chiropractic Organizations

A recent survey of members managed by the American Chiropractic Association for the Foundation for Chiropractic Education & Research (FCER) held up a harsh mirror to the professional organization. In a report of outcomes to members, the ACA noted that "topping the list of chiropractic’s biggest problems was in-fighting within the profession." 

Image
COCSA - pushing chiro unity
The survey results were announced as the ACA and the International Chiropractic Association (ICA) received a Resolution from the board of the Congress of State Chiropractic Associations (COCSA) which charged them to unify. The language that the board of COCSA used was strong. COCSA "demands that the ACA and the ICA set aside their philosophical and political differences and begin the process of merger for the greater purpose of creating a single national voice for the chiropractic profession." The COCSA resolution includes a half-dozen "whereas" statement which lead up to the final one:
"Whereas the political and economic challenges facing the chiropractic profession have become too great and its adversaries have become too strong to justify the continued existence of two competing national associations."
COCSA has it's own skin in the game: the organization has pledged to merge its own operations into a unified ACA/ICA. Other top issues for respondents found in the ACA-FCER survey were "reimbursement limits" and "the actions of certain managed care networks." Over 60% stated that they were not satisfied by recent actions of some managed care firms. Roughly 15% of the 15,000 chiropractors  who were surveyed responded.

Comment
: Taking on managed care may seem like easy pickings compared to taking on chiropractic's unity issues. Notably, two, national acupuncture and Oriental medicine associations are presently finding their way toward unified action based on a unification step in late 2006. (See article here.) The chiropractic associations are much larger and better funded, potentially complicating the resolution process. And the acupuncturists had as their advantage that one of the presidents of their two national organizations, Will Morris, LAc, MSEd, DAOM, had publicly made known his willingness to step down in the interest of unity, which he has. One thing is certain: COCSA is not going to let up pressure. The end of the resolution states, simply: "COCSA will not relent in its pursuit of a single national voice for the chiropractic profession."

2.    Nurse-Led Nightingale Declaration Campaign Seeks Support for Two UN Resolutions

Image
Florence Nightingale - alive in nurse-led initiative
The Integrator received a notice from author and holistic nursing leader Barbara Dossey, PhD, AHN-BC on two nurse-led initiatives to the United Nations.
The nurses are pushing to have 2010 declared the "International Year of the Nurse." The second campaign is to have 2011-2020 declared the "UN Decade for a Healthy World." Both campaigns are organized through the Nightingale Initiative for Global Health, for which Dossey, a Nightingale biographer, is co-founder. The campaign is seeking at least 2-million signers by 2008 to the following statement:
"We, the nurses and concerned citizens of the global community, hereby dedicate ourselves to the accomplishment of a healthy world by the year 2020. We declare our willingness to unite in a program of action, sharing information and solutions to resolve problems and improve conditions -- locally, nationally and globally -- in order to achieve health for all humanity. We further resolve to adopt personal practices and to implement public policies in our communities and nations, making this goal for the year 2020 achievable and inevitable, beginning today in our own lives, in the life of our nations and in the world at large."
The campaign is also seeking organizational sponsors. Presently included are the American Nurses Association, American Association of Critical Care Nurses, Johns Hopkins University School of Nursing, University of Minnesota School of Nursing, University of Maryland School of Nursing, and Decision Critical, Inc. A notice from the campaign states that the signatures and other evidence of worldwide commitment by nurses, midwives, other health workers and concerned citizens will help build a grassroots-to-global foundation of support for these UN Resolutions. The group has an action plan to implement them, locally, nationally and internationally. To sign the Declaration, visit here. To see organizational sponsors, visit here

3.    Holistic Nurses Promote Major Summer 2007 Conference

Image The value of the holistic nurse in the integrated health care world took a jump last fall when the American Nurses Association accepted holistic nursing as a board-certified specialty within nursing. To many, the holistic nurse, as advanced by the American Holistic Nurses Association, has always been viewed as a unique player in integrated care, a discipline unto itself but also one with less guild baggage and potentially most easily trusted by all.

Anyone wishing to learn more about this discipline  can do so through attending the
AHNA’s Annual Conference in Tahoe City, California on June 7-10. Dossey is among the featured presenters, as are anthropologist, author and presenter Angeles Arrien, PhD and Mathy Mezey, EdD, RN, FAAN, the director of the Hartford Institute for Geriatric Nursing. The AHNA is expecting over 500 attendees to this, its 27th annual conference. These conferences seek to provide a wide range of high-quality, in-depth programs addressing critical issues in holistic, integrative health care. For more information, visit the AHNA conference site.

4.    Pizzorno Selected as Integrative Medicine and Wellness Lead for WebMD

Image
Pizzorno - heading up integrative medicine for WebMB
40-million unique visitors a month is the current boast of the network of sites managed by WebMD, with Web-MD Health, the leading online health site, getting over 17-million unique visitors. On March 12,  Web-MD officially opened this village to a new, sponsored blogger, Joseph Pizzorno, ND. Pizzorno's domain in the community forums for WebMD is Integrative Medicine and Wellness.

This is an excellent zone for Pizzorno, whose integrative health accomplishments over the past 30 years have been profound.
Known for his work as founding president of Bastyr University and as co-author of the seminal Textbook of Natural Medicine, Pizzorno is presently founder and CEO of SaluGenecists, Inc., editor of Integrative Medicine: A Clinician's Journal, and chair of the Institute for Functional Medicine. Image In Pizzorno, WebMD has picked up a computer-smart and web-savvy associate. Pizzorno personally stitched together and maintained Bastyr's first computer system in the late 1970s and with SaluGenecists, he is developing artificial intelligence tools which can help create health and wellness for individuals and can be tools used by employers and insurers.

For WebMD, the step is a first embrace of a naturopathic physician blogger and content leader. Interestingly, by doing so, it takes the stalwart WebMD a step beyond where challenger Revolution Health has yet appeared willing to tread.

Disclosure: My spouse and I are minor shareholders in SaluGenecists.

5.    Rohleder Explains Economic Basis for the Community Acupuncture Network Model


An electronically available audio-visual lecture by Lisa Rohleder, LAc, at the Oregon College of Oriental Medicine provides a no-holds barred analysis of current acupuncture business. Rohleder describes the environment which stimulated her and her associates to create the Community Acupuncture Network (CAN), which fosters a controversial model for low-cost, community room-delivered acupuncture. One rarely sees as direct an analysis of business issues in complementary and integrative care, particularly in her link to the incomes of the people served.

Image
Rohleder (r) and CAN co-founders
Rohleder makes a compelling case - like it or not - that, with rare exceptions, presently the only people served well by licensed acupuncturists are the cash-happy, well-off, boutique acupuncture users and the few at the bottom end of the income scale who get free services through addiction or community medicine programs. But what about those households making between $10,000 and $75,000? Can these people afford two treatments a week for three months at $75-$125 per treatment? Does this explain why so many LAcs are under-employed?

Leaning heavily on an Integrator interview with insurance executive Chuck Simpson, DC, of Portland, Oregon-based Complementary Healthcare Plans, Rohleder speaks of low insurer interest in covered acupuncture benefits. She concludes that economic benefits to the licensed acupuncture community through greater inclusion of acupuncturists in 3rd party payment should not be viewed as likely anytime soon. Rohleder offers a tough love presentation which airs issues many professions in alternative, complementary and integrative medicine have, but which few are allowing into the light.

The recently re-unified American Association for Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine
will feature Rohleder and the CAN method of care delivery as a track at their May 10-13 conference in New Orleans. The conference liner notes state simply that the track "will bring a viable cost-efficient model for AOM treatment to Middle America, further empowering both patients and professionals." Your comments are welcome.

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