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Report to Integrator Readers onYear 6 Transitions - Thanks to Past Patrons Lou, Richard and Peter PDF Print E-mail
Written by John Weeks   

Report to Integrator Readers on Transitions at Year 6: With Special Thanks to Past Patrons Lou Sportelli, Richard Sarnat and Peter Amato

Summary: I published the first Integrator Blog News and Reports in March 2006. Since then: 97 issues and over 600 postings; 53 Round-ups reflecting 1060 short articles; over 3-million page views; and 3 dozen Integrator Alerts and Special Reports. From the beginning, the Integrator was produced via a partnership with three individuals whose commitment to the field provided most of the funding that allowed the work: Lou Sportelli, DC, Richard Sarnat, MD and Peter Amato. I have entered a time of transition in my professional work. This will be reflected in what Integrator readers will see going forward in the Integrator. Here is an update on what you can expect, a report on accomplishments in these 6 years, notes on new directions and a hearty thanks to those who made these six years possible.
- John Weeks, Publisher-Editor

1. Transition after the Integrator's 6th Year: New Opportunities

Changes in my professional life are leading this transition for my relationship with the Integrator. New, time-chomping opportunities are opening. My work with the Academic Consortium for Complementary and Alternative Health Care (ACCAHC)
as a vehicle for change is finding increasingly fertile ground. We've aggregated a fine group of leaders and are engaged in several substantive projects. These include such things as the Institute of Medicine Global Forum on Innovation in Health Professional Education, the movement for team care and interprofessional education, promoting research models that propel health-focused, whole person care and developing a Center for Optimal Integration. ACCAHC is engaging a project to help leaders of the integrative health professions prepare to become leaders of healthcare. Other, non-ACCAHC projects pop up. I am engaged with a teams in exploring integrative health and accountable care organizations. These opportunities draw.

Lou Sportelli, DC, President, NCMIC Group: First Integrator patron
I am also engaging new types of writing and new venues. I am intrigued by the Huffington Post audience. How can that forum optimally be used to move integrative health care? I am also interested in reclaiming a long-fallow ability to write a proper, journalistic feature. What topics in what media might help moved this energy? Bottom line: I anticipate spending most of my writing energy, other than the Round-up, elsewhere.

Meantime, the timing of the change in my interest is perfect. The Integrator has only been possible through the substantial support from patronage of 3 individuals and their firms: Lou Sportelli, DC, Richard Sarnat, MD and Peter Amato. (See note below.) Each has, for varying reasons, chosen during the past 18 months to no longer fund this work. I am deeply grateful to each for the opportunity the gave me. Their timing pushes me further outside the safe-house of the integrative practice community and into the larger healthcare dialogue.
I'll be seeking a business model to sustain the Huffington Post and other, non-funded writing. Suggestions are welcome, as is cash.

2. What to Expect from the Next Phase Integrator: Round-up, Plus

Richard Sarnat, MD, co-founder, AMI Group: 2nd Integrator patron
Here is my best sense of what Integrator readers can expect:

  • Continued: Integrator Round-up-in whole or parts I am partly funded to produce the Round-up via an arrangement by which the owners of, which republishes the Round-up, pays a monthly fee. The 5000+ words and 20 shorts monthly make sense economically via re-purposing the content for columns in Integrative Medicine: A Clinician's Journal, and more recently, The Pain Practitioner.
  • Limited: Integrator Forums, Special Reports and Alerts and Columns from others I expect issues will come up where I'll promote some dialogue or action. This happened last month with the Bravewell report. In general, expect the direct integrative practice-focused articles and special Integrator reports to wane. 
  • Links: articles-columns in Huffington Post, elsewhere  No guarantees here. I anticipate writing 0-3 articles/postings a month and sharing these with subscribers. 

Integrator subscribers will continue to receive at least one monthly "push" with the Round-up and links to other pieces at Huffington Post and elsewhere, if I have written any that month. These may or may not be cross-posted on the Integrator site.

3. The Work Product: Integrators #1-#97 (March 2006-March 2012

The Integrator mission these 6 years carried forward that of my prior hard-copy newsletter The Integrator for the Business of Alternative Medicine (1998-2002): Shaping an Industry/Creating Health. Here is quantitative look at the work product:


Integrator Production and Use At a Glance: Six Years
March 2006-March 2012


Individual pages/articles

Page views
  3,136,000 (est.)
Round-up short articles
  1060 (est,)
Total articles

Over 1500
Special Reports
Integrator Comment Forums
Top Contributors

Michael Levin
Taylor Walsh

Round-up re-publisher   
(9000 subscribers)
 Other Integrator
  Healthy Update
Integrator content
  - Integrative Medicine:
A Clinician's Journal

-The Pain Practitioner (AAPM)


4. Integrator Articles by Page Views: 3,136,000 Estimate

Integrator articles continue to be accessed by many via Google, other search engines and Integrator site searches. The numbers of views continues to climb over time.
(If searching inside the Integrator site, surnames or acronyms are the best means of searching.) Satisfaction comes from knowing that things written in 2006 continue to be useful to some today. The single most accessed page is the list of Integrator Editorial Advisers, with over 55,000 "impressions". The remainder of the 22 with over 15,000 views, below, are mainly the back issue compilations accessed via the Archive on the right side of the homepage.

Number of Integrator Articles by Page Views: March 2006-March 2012
Estimate 3,136,000 page Views

# of Postings
  Page Views
 22    Over 15,000
 32    10,000-14,999   5%
 7,500-9,999   9%
 102    5,000-7,499   15%
 210    2,500-4,999   31%
 208    1,000-2,499  

   Less than 999

       3,136,000 (est)  


5. Top 22 Most Popular Integrator Articles: First 6 Years

Listing the most popular articles is challenging. The page view count favors those written in 2006 over those written in 2012. This list is a guesstimate based on how quickly page views have increased, rather than on gross views. After selecting, I clustered these in a few thematic areas that suggested themselves and seem to have drawn attention. Each of these stories may be accessed by selecting the title and putting it in your search engine.
Peter Amato founder, Inner Harmony Group: 3rd Integrator patron
Board certification in integrative medicine   

  • Strategic Shift: Weil's Arizona Center Leads Push for MD Board Certification in Integrative Medicine (2011-09-21) 
  • Integrator Forum: 20 Voices on Weil/Univ. Arizona and the American Board of Integrative Medicine (2011-10-13) 
  • Forum #2 on the American Board of Integrative Medicine: Quinn, Redwood, Gmeiner, Anderson, Manahan (2011-10-29)

AMA and moves against CAM/IM, nursing and other professions
  • AMA Targets Nursing Doctorate and ND Licensing: Old Boys v. the Emerging Medical Matriarchy? (2006-08-08) 
  • AMA SOPP Escalates Campaign Against Nurses, Chiropractors, Naturopaths, Midwives and Others (2008-06-21)
  • AMA Scope of Practice Partnership Targets 30 Legislative Efforts of DCs, NDs, LAcs and CPMs in 2009 (2009-09-03)
  • Battle On: MD Specialists Promote Repeal of Non-Discrimination Vs Integrative Practitioners, Others (2010-05-28) 
  • The AMA's $70-Million Taxation without Representation: Is it Time for a "CPT Party" Revolt? (2010-10-20)

  • Working Class Acupuncture: Revolutionary Business Model Creates Access, Fosters New Business (2006-11-22)
  • Income for Naturopathic Physicians: Data from AANMC Survey (2007-02-04) 
  •  $90-Million Massage Enterprise, Massage Envy, Makes Play in Employee Benefits Market (2007-09-08)
  • Economist Patricia Herman: The Top 9 CAM Therapies with High Quality Evidence of Cost Savings (2009-08-27)
  • Model Whole Practice Study Finds Naturopathic Care Effective, Cost Saving for Canadian Employer (2010-08-20)

Policy & NCCAM
  • The FDA's Guidance on CAM: What is the Appropriate Response? (2007-04-18)
  • Oops, They Did It Again: Open Letter to the New NCCAM Director, Josephine Briggs, MD (2008-01-24) 
  • How NCCAM's "Real World" Congressional Mandate is Optimal for NCCAM's 2010-2015 Strategic Plan (2009-11-06)
  • Reference Guide: Language/Sections on CAM and Integrative Practice in HR 3590-Healthcare Overhaul (2010-05-12)

  • IAYT-sponsored Series on the Future of Yoga Therapy (2007-01-19 11:07:41) 
  • Hospital COO Gannotta Publishes Outcomes of "Inpatient Integrative Medicine in 8 Systems (2010-07-31) 
  • Karla Karapetian: Report on the Penny George Institute Conference on Hospital Based Integrative Care (2010-09-29)
  • Coming of the Light: Integrator Top 10 from 2010 for Integrative Medicine/Integrated Health Care (2010-12-21)
  • Reader Forum: Manahan, Kahn, Foley, Winterstein, Rohleder, Bolles, Levin, Sabin, Fonfa, Olejownik (2011-07-26)        

Lucy S. Gonda: Patroness of the Integrator mission
6. Integrator Benefactors (Over $200,000): Thanks to Lou Sportelli, DC, Richard Sarnat, MD and Peter Amato, plus

When I take time to count my blessings, as I learned to say as a child, the opportunity that three individuals, and a forth, have granted me since early 2006 come to mind. If the Integrator has ever been of value to you, then these individuals and their firms have blessed you as well. From 2006-2011, the newsletter was a core part of family income. Over $200,000 was effectively donated by these individuals and their firms to provide the foundation for this work. (The Integrator was also supported by sponsorships that were support of mission and also business arrangements, with and the Institute for Health and Productivity Management.) Please take a minute to think about the service these have provided.

  • Thanks # 1: Lou Sportelli, DC & NCMIC Group A suggestion from colleagues that I produce an online newsletter after our family's return in 2005 from 3 years away in Costa Rica and Nicaragua locked in when Lou Sportelli, DC committed the NCMIC Group to sponsorship at roughly $12,000 a year. Lou is a colleague since 1997. We first met an early conference David Eisenberg, MD hosted at Harvard. He was a reader of the St. Anthony's Report on the Business of Alternative Medicine, later the hard-copy Integrator for the Business of Alternative Medicine. We got to know each other better in 1999 when he invited me to dinner with him and futurist Clement Bezold, PhD prior to a Congressional Briefing on complementary and alternative medicine Lou had organized. Lou has been a huge collaborator and supporter of various projects with which I have been involved to enhance collaboration since, including with ACCAHC. He's also been a regular commentators. Continuous support from 2006-2011. Thank you!

  • Thanks #2: Richard Sarnat, MD and Alternative Medicine Integration Group  Sarnat and I first connected face-to-face at the 2000 Integrative Medicine Industry Leadership Summit. He shared AMI's fascinating work in Illinois to prove the cost effectiveness of a model of integrative practice led by whole person chiropractors. From the beginning, we met in the relatively rare earth of integrative care stakeholders who believed that proving an economic value was core to the field's advances. AMI subsequently piloted a cost-saving integrative pain program for high-utilizing Medicaid population in Florida. His support of the Integrator has been a classic "alignment of interest." More integrative practitioners and institutions need to be gathering and publishing outcomes. Meantime, Richard has always supported enhancing the connection of all disciplines in what he calls "the guild-less guild." Tremendous support from 2007 through 2011 via Richard and his partner, Jim Zechman. Thanks!  

  • Thanks #3: Peter Amato and Inner Harmony Wellness  Very early in the evolution of "integrative clinics" I heard rumor that some character was starting an ambitious center near Scranton, Pennsylvania. Scranton was not generally consider a point of light for the movement. The clinic was the Inner Harmony Wellness Centers, founded by mindfulness teacher and sometimes philanthropist Peter Amato. I included Amato's clinic in 1999 in the Integrative Clinic Benchmarking Project from my hard-copy Integrator for the Business of Alternative Medicine. We also shared an interest in policy. Peter, like Lou and Richard, participated in, and helped sponsor, the 2000-2002 Integrative Medicine Industry Leadership Summits. Peter's openness about sharing the successes and challenges in his various business models has made him a useful consultant to many. Tremendous support from 2007-2010.  
In addition, the Integrator had two-year sponsorship from Tino Villani, DC and Triad Healthcare and one-year of sponsorship via Charlie DuBois and Standard Process. For each of these, the contribution was less for business advantage than to support the mission. Lucy S. Gonda, the leading patroness of my various not-for-profit engagements these past 12 years, has also been a significant Integrator backer. Some other individual readers have also contributed. Thank you each.

7. Next Steps for the Integrator Business Model

As the Integrator sponsorships waned*, some colleagues suggested I try a subscription model. I haven't, mainly because I have not wanted to commit to more of the same, and partly to maintain the fiction that the Integrator is worth $50 or $100 a year to a few hundred of you - as long as I don't ask. Nor did I feel like working hard to find new sponsors of the Integrator since I knew I was changing my course. I can tell you each as a matter of evidence-based fact that if new donors or patrons stepped up to support the unfunded aspects of my ongoing mission, that would be happy-making, both for self and family.

So, bottom line, expect less Integrator content, but expect continued content. Given inbox-induced spiraling out-of-control of each of our lives, less might feel just about right. I have been lucky these six years to be paid to write what I wish, unfettered by anyone's editorial line or schedule, except to keep publishing it. Thank you Lou, Richard, Peter, Toni and Lucy, for this freedom. Serving the "guildless-guild" to promote a health-focused, whole person, integrative system of care is better, and more regular, when financially compensated. As most of you know, the work has its intrinsic values as well. The notes many of you have sent through the years affirm this. More to come!


Comment: One has to enjoy the irony that the business model of the Integrator has been the same as that of many of the "integrative medicine" initiatives reported here: philanthropy based!

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