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Issues #63-#64 - May-June 2009 PDF Print E-mail
Written by John Weeks   

Issues #63 & #64 - May-June 2009

_______________________________

Issue #64 - June 23, 2009



June 23, 2009

Notes from an Exceptional Experience: The North American Research Conference on Complementary and Integrative Medicine, May 12-15, 2009

The good news is that, if you missed the 2009 North American Research Conference on Complementary and Integrative Medicine, May 12-15, you can still access much of the wonderful cornucopia of what it offered. Innovision Health Media created an internet-available, searchable database of the 300+ abstracts of the keynotes, workshops, diverse symposia, posters and discussions which 810 of us from 24 countries had a chance to sample. This article introduces you to a few of my favorite things regarding the Conference's interdisciplinary content, educational sessions, whole systems and health services research. Make a mental note to attend the third in a line of these every-3rd-year gatherings, sponsored by the Consortium of Academic Health Centers for Integrative Medicine and 26 Participating Organizations, as tentatively planned for 2012. More

June 18, 2009

Integrative Medicine and Integrated Health Care Round-up:  May 29-June 18, 2009

Poll on health reform finds public favors investment in prevention over treatment by 4 to one margin ... Obama on acupuncture and prevention ... U.S. Senator Murray goes to bat for expanding chiropractic to all VA facilities ... Bravewell Collaborative announces "important evening" in Washington, D.C. November 4, 2009 ... AAAOM renews push for acupuncturists in medicare, federal employee benefits ... Chiropractors challenge Office of Inspector General Report on over-payments ...  Massage accrediting agency names Henrioulle as executive director, Schwartz as top volunteer ... Association of Chiropractic Colleges in expanded role internationally, meet with Sebelius at WHO meeting ... International organization of health services researchers in complementary and integrative medicine meets in Brisbane, educator meeting in England ... Society for Integrative Oncology focuses on whole systems, interdisciplinary practices, at November 2009 meeting ... MSNBC series negative on CAM, 76% of in reader poll "skeptical" about alternative medicine ... Oregon Public Broadcasting stimulates online debate over prescriptive rights and primary care in naturopathic practices ... Gawande's New Yorker article on money-making corrupting medicine makes Obama's must-read list ... 2.5-year-old community acupuncture clinic, Communi-chi, provides 5000th patient visit ... Educators offered free access to online version of American College of Physicians CAM book. More

June 17, 2009

Obama's Comments on Acupuncture and Complementary and Alternative Medicine: A Link to Prevention

So what does the youthful new president of the United States of American think about complementary and alternative medicine? Despite very positive comments about the importance of prevention, we've seen nothing on this topic from Barack Obama other than a campaign-era letter of support for chiropractic. Thanks to a questioner in a public forum last month, we now have more of an answer. Here is the transcript of those comments, in full. The short answer: Obama wouldn't mind a massage, thinks science has shown some value in acupuncture, and links this subject with his administration's efforts to promote a prevention orientation via healthcare reform. Obama is articulate about the resistance to prevention orientation in both the political and healthcare arenas. It's a rich exchange involving science, prevention and politics, mixed in with a little humor. More


June 17, 2009

Do the Math: The Medical Industry Plan to Cut $2-Trillion is a Gambit to Save Their Bacon

In mid-May, the private-sector powers-that-be in US healthcare announced that they had a plan to cut $2-trillion from US medical expenses over a 10 year period. The much-publicized offer from the American Medical Association plus American Hospital Association plus insurers plus pharmaceutical industry (with a token union thrown in) was characterized as "unlikely bedfellows" by an AMA spokesperson. Sounds like a lot of money to give back, doesn't it? Never mind for a moment that when Obama asked them for details, they only found $1.7-trillion. But some simple mathematics, informed by thinking from the Institute of Medicine (IOM), suggests that this target is not only extremely unambitious, it may be a largely self protective gambit. The differential between what the ruling stakeholders in US medicine are willing to consider ceding back to the public and what they ought to be ceding based on an IOM-based projection for a rational, non-wasteful, less harmful system, is between $633-billion and $1.15 trillion per year. Rather than unlikely bedfellows, we seem to be seeing here the circling of the wagons by medicine's economic oligarchy to hold onto the profits from waste. More


June 10, 2009

Sheila Quinn: Pepsico May Be Moved by Taxes, But For People, Health Has to Be for Something

In Michael Levin's controversial perspective in a recent Integrator column he wrote: "Pepsico knows the truth:  taxes, not education, reduces (poor lifestyle choices)." His column provoked Integrator adviser Sheila Quinn to this thoughtful look at the obstacles to good education penetrating our thinking, and shifting our habits. Quinn's conclusion is also that mere education is limited: "Health has to be FOR something." Quinn, recently the co-author of 21st Century Medicine: A New Model for Medical Education and Practice, urges that we as a community, together with our policy-makers, spend more time exploring the carrots of positive incentives rather than merely the sticks of higher taxes. Could be a key step toward U.S. Senator Harkin's new "wellness society." More 


June 9, 2009

Patient-Center Care Finds "Extremist" Advocate in Donald Berwick; Money-Centered Care Blasted in the New Yorker

Two recent articles underscore a key battleground in healthcare reform the conflict between patient-centered care and any other foci, whether MD interest, money-making, or some combination. The Institute for Health Improvement's Donald Berwick, MD, MPP, arguably the most influential physician of our time, offered a 10-page critique of prior health reform efforts in Health Affairs. He declares himself an "extremist" on behalf of a patient-centered and consumerist approach to care. Meantime, physician-journalist Atul Gawande, MD, writing in the New Yorker, explores the Texas town of McAllen, where healthcare costs are highest in the nation. He concludes that the culture of medicine has been systematically overrun by the money-making motives in McAllen's physician and delivery community. Gawande resists arguing for it, but makes clear that it is employed physicians, rather than for-profit physician entrepreneurs, who are more likely to put patients and teamwork, first. Late-breaking: The New York Times reports that Obama has made the Gawande piece mandatory reading. More





Issue #63 - May 31, 2009



May 30, 2009

Impact of Integrator, White, Emily Kane, ND, LAc on Dialogue over $1-1 Billion Comparative Effectiveness Research

Integrator writer Daphne White, CHTP, wrote two April 2009 features on Obama's $1.1 billion comparative effectiveness research (CER) initiative which Obama's budget director Peter Orszag believes is a key to reforming our medical system. White's insightful piece spoke of the "Kabuki Play" in the first "listening session" on the initiative. This article details the impact of White's work as both journalist and an advocate for the integrative practice community playing a role in this dialogue. Noted here are links to the inclusion of White's testimony in a government report of the meeting, a letter to the Coordinating Council from Integrator reader Emily Kane, ND, LAc, and the linking to White's articles by Stanford Wellsphere, the Association of Clinical Research Organizations and others. More


May 28, 2009

Integrative Medicine and Integrated Health Care Round-up:  April 29-May 28, 2009

Vicki and Ron Simms back ambitious new integrative oncology center at UCLA ... U Virginia adds acupuncture to employee benefits ... California budget crunch sweeps acupuncture, chiropractic, other services out of Medicaid ... Sullivan column presents employer booklet as key guide to health reform ... Cherkin acupuncture-toothpicks study generates significant press ... Minnesota Medical Association dedicates entire monthly magazine to integrative medicine in its state ... NARCCIM research conference draws over 800 from 24 countries ... Massage Research Foundation under Diana Thompson, LMP makes strides in stimulating research in that field ... Tai Sophia Institute: snapshot of a growing budget ... Holistic nurses expand certification offerings ... AANP, the naturopathic professional association, announces new journal and website ... Natural Products Foundation publishes data on the $60-billion that the dietary supplement industry contributes to the economy ... American Botanical Council reports growth of the botanical industry in 2008 to $4.8-billion ... Frank Nicchi, MS, DC elected president of the Association of Chiropractic Colleges ... Researcher Gert Bronfort, DC, PhD honored, plus transitions for Crites, Schwartz and Corcoran. More


May 21, 2008

Pain is Not a Disease: A Look at Antonio Villani's Book on a Timely and Costly Topic

Antonio "Tino" Villani has trafficked in pain for 30 years as a managed care executive and as a chiropractor. The two stakeholders, as he writes, are part of a huge industry that has grown up as we moved, culturally, from bearing pain to muting it. But Villani attributes his greatest learning about the subject to the period when he was leaving his practice and seeking to empower his patients to take more charge on their own. His book, Pain is Not a Disease, is a very approachable read which is a great device for re-thinking our relationship to pain. It is laced throughout with quotes that deepen reflection and help in Villani's goal of transforming our relationship to pain. I conclude this review with some thoughts stimulated by the book regarding two recent experiences with pain prescriptions.  More






For earlier articles, please click below:

Issues #60-#62 - March-April 2009

Issues #57-#59 - Jan-Feb 2009

Issues #55-#56 - Nov-Dec 2008

Issues #51-#54 - Sept-Oct 2008

Issues #47-#50 - July-August 2008

Issues #45 & -#46 - May-June 2008

Issues #43-#45 Mar-April 2008


Issues #41 & #42 - Feb 2008

Issues #39 & #40 - Dec-Jan '08


Issues #37 & #38 - Nov 2007

Issues #35 & #36 - Oct 2007

Issues #33 & #34 - Sept 2007

Issues #30-#32 - July-Aug 2007

Issues #28 & #29 - June 2007

Issues #26 and #27 - May 2007

Issue #25 - April 2007

Issues # 23 & #24 - March 2007

Issues #21 and #22 - Feb 2007

Issues #19 and & 20 - Jan 2007

Issues #17 and #18 - Dec 2006

Issues #15 and #16 - Nov 2006

Issues #13 and #14 - Oct 2006

Issues #11 and #12- Sept 2006

Issues #9 and #10 - Aug 2006

Issues #7 and #8 - July 2006

Issues #5 and #6 - June 2006

Issues #3 and #4 - May 2006

Issues #1 and #2 - Apr 2006

All Postings to Aug 15, by Subject Matter

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