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Issues & 78 & #79-July August 2010 PDF Print E-mail
Written by John Weeks   

Issue #79 -September 7, 2010

September 7, 2010

Integrative Medicine and Integrated Health Care Round-up: September 2010

NCCAM issues DRAFT 2011-2015 strategic plan, includes "real world" and health-promoting outcomes; Briggs on researching complex approaches; Canada Post outcomes show effectiveness and cost-savings from whole practice of integrative naturopathic medicine; Medicare to reimburse Pritikin for onsite services; Medicare to investigate chiropractic billing; doulas lay infrastructure for reimbursement; NYU integrative urology program led by naturopathic doctor Geovanni Epinosa; Mayo Clinic embraces Alexander Technique; 4 integrative medicine organizations link for April 2011 iMosaic conference; holistic nurses endorse new coaching program; American Chiropractic Association and National Wellness Institute partner for wellness certification for chiropractors; Helbig's Institute for Therapeutic Massage pioneers oncology massage certification and services for the under-served in collaboration with Perlman's UMDNJ; U Minnesota offers first nursing doctoral program specialty in integrative practice; National University of Health Sciences' innovative integrated DC/ND/AOM programs featured; George Family Foundation grants $556,000 for nurse leadership in integrative practice; former HHS secretary Thompson visits, lauds Standard Process; Alternative Therapies offers all nursing issue; and a note on Rustom Roy, 1924-2010. More 

September 2, 2010

The Real World and Health Ascend: 1st Thoughts on NCCAM's Draft Strategic Plan for 2011-2015

The comment period for the draft 2011-2015 Strategic Plan for the NIH National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine is open until September 30, 2010. The draft was posted August 30. This article provides an outline of key points in the 34-page NCCAM document including, as the plan's authors organize them: 4 conclusions from the team's landscape assessment; 3 overarching goals; 5 guideposts for keeping on track; 4 frames for priority-setting; and 5 strategic objectives. This, the 3rd NCCAM strategic plan, is the first from the era of Josephine Briggs, MD as director. There is fine stuff here to celebrate relative to how challenges are described, real-world research advocated, and an intriguing new focus advocated for examining the potential of complementary therapies and integrative practices in health-focused care and health promotion. I conclude with 5 reasons for excitement and 3 areas of concern. Kudos to Briggs and her team. More

August 31. 2010

8 Voices: Stakeholders on Seely-Herman Report of Canada Post Savings from Whole Practice Naturopathic Care for CVD

Readers from multiple stakeholders in integrative medicine responded to the findings on integrative naturopathic medicine entitled "Model Whole Practice Study Finds Treatment by Naturopathic Doctors Effective & Cost-Saving for Canada Post Employees with Cardiovascular Disease." The project, led by Dugald Seely, BSc, ND, MSc and Patricia Herman, MS, ND, PhD, was quickly recognized as useful in outreach to employers, policy makers, the mainstream delivery system and clinicians themselves. Some readers merely exulted. Here are comments received from university president James Winterstein, DC, employer consultant Chris Skisak, naturopathic oncology specialist Chad Aschtgen, ND, FABNO, hospital COO Richard Gannotta, NP, DHA, FACHE, North Carolina licensing leader Susan Delaney, ND, holistic doctor Kjersten Gmeiner, MD, Israeli hospital mind-body coordinator Nimrod Sheinman, ND and Foundations Project director Pamela Snider, ND. More

August 28, 2010

Reader Forum: Knutson, Stargrove, Gmeiner, Redwood, Sommer, Esteves, Ullman, Swift & Sudoo

Lori Knutson, RN, HN-BC on the importance of clinical interests in federal panels and health coaching; Mitch Stargrove, ND, LAc on Consumer Reports' "Dirty Dozen" supplements; Kjersten Gmeiner, MD on RWJF's sobering inter-professional education project; Vanessa Esteves, MBA, ND responding to Margaret Beeson, ND with a recommended policy for practitioners selling supplements in their offices; Daniel Redwood, DC and Beth Sommers, PhD, LAc on the negative comments from Integrator readers toward CMS head Don Berwick, MD; Dana Ullman, MPH on why Oxford Journals let go of eCam; Kathie Swift, MS, RD, LDN on the changing dietetics landscape; and Andree Sudoo on antagonism toward the Clayton School from licensed NDs. More 

August 26, 2010

Pictures at an Exposition:  A Report on the 25th Anniversary Convention of the American Association of Naturopathic Physicians

The American Association of Naturopathic Physicians (AANP), the national professional association for the nation's 4000 naturopathic physicians, celebrated its 25th anniversary conference in Portland, Oregon in August. This report offers snapshots of the profession at a challenging juncture. Included here are: perspectives of modern elders Jared Zeff and Joe Pizzorno; budget issues amidst a declining economy and advancing public interest; candidate for change Michael Cronin elected as president-elect in hard-fought 60-40 vote; research report from Dugald Seely and Patricia Herman on the most useful whole practice outcomes the profession has developed; election of Michael Cronin, after a battle, to AANP president-elect post; announcement of Bastyr University's plans for a new California campus; clinical leader Mona Morstein's challenge to keynoter Josephine Briggs, NIH NCCAM's director; House of Delegates action; kick-off for a new Naturopathic Physicians Research Institute led by Carlo Calabrese; meeting of senior editors on the Foundations of Naturopathic Medicine project; and some commentary. More

August 22, 2010

Model Whole Practice Study Finds Treatment by Naturopathic Doctors Effective & Cost-Saving for Canada Post Employees with Cardiovascular Disease

Preliminary results from a randomized controlled pragmatic trial of the whole practice of naturopathic medicine for Canada Post employees with elevated cardiovascular risk found treatment by integrative naturopathic doctors to be both effective and cost-saving. Naturopathic treatment produced an overall $1025 cost benefit per participant. The results were reported by Dugald Seely, BSc, ND, MSc and economist Patricia Herman, MS, ND, PhD, on August 12, 2010 at the conference of the American Association of Naturopathic Physicians. The methods for researching this whole practice, individualized treatment are a model for all  integrative practitioners, whether integrative MDs/DOs, broad scope DCs, AOM practitioners or other multi-modal care-givers for whom reductive trials fail to capture their practices. The model provides critical information for healthcare decision makers. For many in the naturopathic profession, the outcomes are celebrated as a potential game-changer in that profession's efforts to expand inclusion of their services by employers, public agencies and insurers. More

August 18, 2010

Sobering Findings from Robert Wood Johnson Project Illuminate the Challenges of Inter-Professional Integration

The emerging field of inter-professional education (IPE) is viewed by many as a chief contributor to the kind of optimal integration needed to most enhance patient care. The integrative practice fields tend to embrace this trend as part of the necessary transformation of health care practice. Yet a report from a Robert Wood Johnson Foundation project that merely sought to create better team care between nurses and MDs is deeply sobering. What does it say about integrating medical doctors and nurses with chiropractors and naturopathic physicians, for instance? Are we up to taking on this transformational challenge? Or have we all been, as is sometimes wondered, smoking something?  More



Issue #78 -August 6, 2010

August 6, 2010

Integrative Medicine and Integrated Health Care Round-up: August 2010

The AMA's resolution in favor of discrimination against other providers as amended ... Licensed midwives take one from OB-GYNs in New York ... Legislation introduced to get DCs into US Public Health Service ... Samueli Institute links with Joint Chiefs of Staff for magazine supplement on "Total Force Fitness" ... True North shares paradigm with MGMA group ...  Cavallo Point hotel-spa and integrative center opens with Bradly Jacobs, MD, MPH in key role ... Massage therapists beat back nasty allegations from local police to protect new law in California ... New integrative dietetics practice group in the American Dietetics Association ... Author-clinician Ilene Serlin, PhD makes headway in introducing whole health practices at APA ... University of Chicago becomes 45th member of the Consortium of Academic Health Centers for Integrative Medicine ... Bastyr now home to a leading midwifery school and Simkin Center doula training ... Mail order Clayton College shuts doors, to delight of naturopathic doctors ... 6th IN-CAM Research Symposium in November 2010 ... Group Health Institute team identifies diverse positive outcomes from CAM-IM not typically captured in studies ... Research finds health in "forest bathing" ... PMG Data Services purchases Innovision ... Holistic Primary Care marks 10th year of publication ... Consumer Reports blasts "dirty dozen" of dietary supplements; Blumenthal responds ... Natural Foods Merchandiser reports modest growth in industry in 2009 ... Briggs and NCCAM in media whipsaw ... Comments on Krakow's "alternative medicine as a free market approach" ... Lewis Bazakos, DC given another significant award, this from New York Chiropractic College ... More 

July 31, 2010

Hospital COO Richard Gannotta Publishes on Outcomes of Inpatient Integrative Medicine Programs in 8 Systems

Duke Health Raleigh Hospital COO Richard J. Gannotta, NP, DHA discovered via a data search that the literature is exceedingly thin on inpatient integrative medicine programs. He wanted data on how programs are faring in the 3 critical areas of clinical effectiveness, patient satisfaction and, most importantly, financial performance. Gannotta identified 8 programs and assembled a research team through which they engaged structured interviews with the clinical and business leaders. The results are published here, in full, as Perceptions of Medical Directors and Hospital Executives Regarding the Value of Inpatient Integrative Medicine Programs. As Gannotta and his team noted, "the number of responses associated with financial performance and depth of those responses could be an indicator of participant concern as it relates to program vulnerability and sustainability in uncertain economic times." This is a useful look inside the mind and experience of integrative medicine integration in the pioneering hospitals with inpatient programs. More 

July 27, 2010

CMS' Berwick Will Be Bad for Integrative Practice: Comments from Chris Foley, MD, Ron Hoffman, MD and Cindy Krueger, MPH

The Integrator advocacy of the controversial Donald Berwick, MD for director of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) sparked outspoken pushback from 3 readers: Minnesota-based integrative clinic leader Chris Foley, MD, former American College for the Advancement in Medicine president Ron Hoffman, MD and consultant Cindy Krueger, MPH. Opposition tended to break on ideologic lines. Is support of Berwick out of touch with the integrative practice community? Interestingly, Berwick's nomination is blasted by a leading anti-alternative medicine blogger. I give their push-back a little pushback. There is evidence that Big Government can be quite friendly to inclusion of integrative practices. Do you think Berwick will be bad for integrative care? More

July 26, 2010

Margaret Beeson, ND: In-Office Dispensary Income Supports Time with Patients in Integrative Practice

Margaret Beeson, ND, owns and operates a Yellowstone Naturopathic Clinic, a complex which includes a 6 NDs, a spa, associated chiropractic and dental offices and a natural products dispensary. In this contribution to the Integrator dialogue on the potential conflict of interest issues in doctors selling products for a profit, Beeson offers 3 core arguments. The most important is an honest acknowledgment that product incomes helps buy the time she takes with patients and the staff to support their care. Are natural product sales the "procedure" that floats holistic practice? Heck, could they be part of the economic strategy to lure more MDs to primary care? More

July 25, 2010

Forging Links Between Holism, Integrative Health and the Environment: Is This the Time?

Scott Shannon, MD, president-elect of the American Board of Integrative Holistic Medicine (ABIHM) wants to see "ecological medicine" integrated into "the next iteration of holism." A fall conference co-sponsored by UCSF Osher Center and the Whole Child Center led by integrative pediatrician Larry Rosen, MD will explore "ecological health for the whole child." The Integrated Healthcare Policy Consortium is asking members of the integrative practice community if the organization should focus its energy on environmental issues. Something seems to be in the air, deepening the connection between.integrative medicine and these broader ecological themes. The connection is natural, but is this the time for these still young and resource-stretched organizations to be taking on new dimensions? More
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