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 Integrative Medicine and Integrated Health Care Round-up: October 2010 
 
The following is one in an ongoing series of columns entitled Integrator Blog by . View all columns in series
Summary: IHPC, others convene stakeholders for policy action plan on integrative practices in reform law ... Goertz named to influential Board of Governors of PCORI, significant new, national comparative effectiveness research institute ... AANP urges members to weigh in on endocrine disruption bill ... Australian study reports cost savings from acupuncture and 3 natural products ... Disturbing national data on incomes of licensed AOM practitioners stimulates soul-searching ... Two-thirds of massage therapists note downturn in practices in lagging economy ... Supplement sales hold steady ... Managed CAM and wellness firm American Specialty Health hits $147-million in revenues ... Penny George Institute/Allina publish 2010 outcomes report ... Donna Karan's Urban Zen expands nationally with Kent State partnership in program for nurses ... Georgetown and Bastyr initiate novel agreement between naturopathic and conventional academic programs ... Marino Center links with Mass Medical Society for integrative medicine training ... True North Healing Center's Dahlborg brings integrative business model to Dartmouth Medical School ... Alliance for Natural Health examines Wikipedia biases against natural health and medical alternatives ... Foundation for Chiropractic Progress a useful model for fund-raising a discipline's national initiative ... AAAOM breaks pattern in naming medical doctor Niemtzow to board ... Riley and editorial team resign from Alternative Therapies in Health and Medicine citing differences with new owners ... Publication opportunities in new peer-reviewed Topics in Integrative Health Care/Hawk and in special integrative health issue of Patient Education Counseling/Rakel ... 2011 Integrative Health Care Symposium to be held in New York, March 4-6 ... Horace Elliott, Ad Haramati and Sherman Cohn honored ...

Policy

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IHPC: Took lead in pulling stakeholders together
"Stakeholder Conference on Integrated Health Care Reform" develops policy action plan:
IHPC, Palmer, TIIH lead effort

The Patient Protection and Affordable Health Care Act (PPACA), a.k.a. the Obama-Pelosi health reform law, included historic new recognition of complementary and integrative practices and practitioners in multiple sections of the law. Astute politicos will know that language in a law is an empty shell.
Work must focus on the regulations that will determine what the law means, and populating relevant advisory committees with professionals who understand and can advocate for integrative practice concepts and approaches.

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Palmer: Stepped up to play major role
On September 27-29, 2010, a multi-disciplinary and multi-stakeholder group of integrative practice leaders convened in Washington, DC at the Georgetown University Conference Center to formulate a coordinated response to the work ahead. The lead organizing agency was the Integrated Healthcare Policy Consortium (IHPC), led by executive director Janet Kahn, PhD. IHPC was joined by Palmer College of Chiropractic, represented by Kahn's co-lead and fellow IHPC board member, Christine Goertz, DC, PhD and The Institute for Integrative Health, led by Brian Berman, MD. In morning sessions, participants heard from congressional aides and lobbyists close to the development of the law. Participants then met in working groups in the following interest areas, with the relevant section of PPACA noted: access and non-discrimination (2706); healthcare work force (5101); prevention and wellness (4001); CPT codes; comparative effectiveness research (6301); and integration in practice (3502). Each team recommended national action priorities.

IHPC plans to develop these into a report on the meeting that will be broadly disseminated (and will be reported here). Kahn noted that the organization also plans to post content from the presentations on their website. (Check www.ihpc.info as these may come available at any time.) A running theme was how to create the best coalition, and resources, to build the active lobbying presence in Washington, D.C. to move the agenda once articulated.

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Berman's new not-for-profit helps another important convening
Comment
: This conference was remarkable evidence of the spirit of trust and collaboration that has evolved over the last decade through multiple meetings and relationships among the influential MDs, DCs, nurses, researchers, NDs, massage therapists, acupuncture and Oriental medicine professionals and other stakeholders invited to this conference. I will be reporting sections of the content in the future as I await IHPC's report which promises to be something of a blue print for action in the months and years ahead.

A clear message from presenter and participant Deborah Senn, former Washington State Insurance Commissioner: Without vigilance, the new law will be hollow. So to all of us with skin in this game: 1) donate to support the lobbying; 2) get your organizations to expand IHPC's band-width by becoming members of the organization's Partners for Health; and 3) think about what very wealthy individuals are out there with a joint love of policy and "alternative medicine" or integrative health. This is a time when such an individual or individuals can have tremendous impact. Credit the 3 lead organizations for pulling this meeting together on a tight time frame, and Bastyr University and Standard Homeopathic, Co. for their sponsorship grants.

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Choate: One of 19 Governors of the independent agency
Integrative practice researcher Goertz named to influential Board of Governors of the $650-million/year Patient Centered Outcomes Research Institute


A September 23, 2010 release from the General Accounting Office announced the 19 members of the powerful Board of Governors of the new
Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute (PCORI) established under PPACA, the health reform act. PCORI was created, like the Institute of Medicine, as an independent nonprofit corporation that is not “an agency or establishment of the U.S. Government.” Christine Goertz, DC, PhD, vice chancellor for research and health policy at Palmer College of Chiropractic was among those named. A release from Palmer College notes that "Goertz' experience and expertise is in the area of integrative healthcare research." Goertz has held prior positions as deputy director of the Samueli Institute and as the first program officer on health services research for the NIH National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine.

The purpose of PCORI is “to assist patients, clinicians, purchasers, and policy-makers in making informed health decisions by advancing the quality and relevance of evidence” regarding the prevention, treatment, diagnosis and management of diseases and health conditions in various patient populations, then disseminating these patient-centered, outcomes-based research findings. The Institute's budget will climb to $650-million in 2014, where it will remain through 2019.
Comment: Goertz, an Integrator adviser, is well-connected throughout the integrative health community. She was elected recently to the board of directors of the Integrated Healthcare Policy Consortium and was instrumental in driving the stakeholders' meeting noted in this Round-up. Goertz was also the founding co-chair of the Research Working Group of the Academic Consortium for Complementary and Alternative Health Care and a program committee member for the 2009 research conference of the Consortium of Academic Health Centers for Integrative Medicine. As far back as 2001, Goertz was a participant in the Integrative Medicine Industry Leadership Summit. Goertz is also, according to a release on the appointment from the American Chiropractic Association, an "active ACA member" who "serves as chair of the association's Performance Measures Work Group, is a member of its Health Promotion and Wellness Committee and consults on research issues."

While many in the field hoped that more than one individual who is known to be knowledgeable about integrative practice had been appointed to PCORI's governing board, the consensus is that Goertz' selection is terrific. Thanks to Palmer Chancellor Dennis Marchiori, DC, PhD for supporting Goertz in a position that is certain to have many demands and which will pull her away from her hands-on duties at Palmer. Marchiori spoke for many in the Palmer release: “I can think of no one better than Dr. Christine Goertz to play a key role in this new national initiative to set the agenda for patient-centered research, and help direct U.S. efforts in this area.”
ImageNaturopathic association urges members to action on Endocrine Disruption Prevention Act (S 2828, HR 4190)

In an action push in September, the American Association of Naturopathic Physicians (AANP) urged its members to contact their members of Congress in support of the Endocrine Disruption Prevention Act (S2828 and HR4190). According to the AANP, the bills would authorize the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences "to conduct endocrine disruption research in order to develop assays that will identify endocrine disrupting chemicals and determine their safety. The program will rely on a panel of scientific experts, free of conflict of interest, to evaluate the findings and determine the level of concern." Such information will be passed on to relevant regulatory agencies to propose appropriate responsive action. 

Comment: Nice to see the AANP act outside of its particular guild interest to promote this critical public health issue. Environmental issues are close to naturopathic thinking relative to the role of terrain in disease and health. The AANP action is another expression of the number of overt connections between the integrative practice fields and integrative health that were explored here. Credit executive director Karen Howard and board member Michael Cronin, ND for moving this. 

Cost & Economics

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Document shows areas for cost-savings via integrative practices
Australian report finds cost benefits from acupuncture and natural product interventions


The National Institute of Complementary Medicine (NICM), established with seed funding provided by the Australian Government and a New South Wales governmental agency has published a recent report that found cost effectiveness for most of the handful of therapies examined. The agency sent a September 13, 2010 press release entitled Economic report finds complementary medicine could ease health budget.

Modality/agent
  Finding
     
Acupuncture for chronic
low back pain
  
Cost effective if used as a complement
to standard care (medication, physiotherapy,
exercises, education), although not
generally cost effective when used as a
replacement to standard care (unless
co‐morbidity of depression is included).
 St. John's Wort
  Determined to be cost effective compared
to standard anti‐depressants for
patients
with mild to moderate (not severe)
depression
. The main driver is the lower
unit cost of St. John's wort.

Fish oils rich in
omega‐3 fatty acids


  Highly cost effective when used as an
adjunctive treatment in people with a history
of coronary heart disease, achieving reduced
death and morbidity. Not cost effective
in reducing non‐steroidal anti‐inflammatory
drug use in rheumatoid arthritis.


 Phytodolor
(proprietary herbal)
  Cost saving in managing osteoarthritis
compared with the principal non‐steroidal anti‐
inflammatory drug Diclofenac.
     

The National Center
is hosted by the University of Western Sydney. According to the report, "Australians spend over $3.5 billion each year on complementary medicines and therapies, most commonly to assist in the management of chronic disease and improve health and well-being."
Comment via Integrator adviser Michael Levin: The link to this study was provided me by adviser Michael Levin (thank you Michael!). He subsequently pointed to this specific comment in the report: "The exclusion of productivity costs means that these results may be conservative. Chronic pain is associated with absenteeism from work and reduced
   
  Double benefits from acupuncture?

"If the presenteeism and absenteeism
costs of low-back pain are averted,
the benefits from acupuncture would double."

work effectiveness (presenteeism). Access Economics [the author of the report] estimated that in 2007 while the health system costs of chronic pain accounted for 20% of the total costs, the burden of disease and productivity losses associated with chronic pain each accounted for 43% of the total cost. If the presenteeism and absenteeism costs of LBP are averted in a one to one ratio with the burden of disease as Access Economics (2007) would suggest, the benefits from acupuncture would double (or more than double if the other indirect financial costs such as informal carer costs were also included)."

Additional Comment: It is noteworthy that the conclusion of the Australian government on St. John's Wort is that the use of the herb is cost-effective while that of the U.S. government, via NCCAM research on the herb, is that it is no more effective than a placebo. It is also noteworthy that including the concept of presenteeism in cost studies, see Levin's comment, as was done in this positive Canada Post-naturopathic doctors trial, remains very rare.
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Ward-Cook: NCCAOM's CEO
NCCAOM survey finds stark challenges for most graduates of acupuncture and Oriental medicine schools


The 2008 Job Task Analysis by the
National Certification Commission for Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine (NCCAOM) included a set of questions on income, education debt and practice settings. The questions were added to fill gaps in the profession's self-knowledge. A key finding: 70% of respondents gross <$60,000 a year with significant percentages grossing less than $40,000. Meantime, median student loan debt has grown to $56,000. Publication of the findings has kicked off a round of sometimes acrimonious soul-searching in the profession. Lisa Rohleder, LAc, co-founder of the Community Acupuncture Network (CAN), captured the sentiment by reference to a well known children's book about a boy named Alexander and called the findings "the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Numbers." NCCAOM CEO Kory Ward-Cook, PhD, CAE, is quoted in this Integrator article on the subject, which includes a chart of key outcomes:
"I agree with [Rohleder's] analysis. It's sad (that practitioners are making so little). This is the first time this information is coming out. A lot of organizations aren't going to like it. It's lower than they have been saying ...There appear to be schools where students thrive, and some where they don't .. We need to address the problem. Maybe we don't need to graduate so many. Maybe we need to figure out how to employ them. We've got to figure out if the profession will be a two-tier system or non-tier, whether it will be doctoral level or non-doctoral or both. We have to figure this out." 
Rohleder, who has over the last 4 years engaged the profession in a discussion about its economic viability and its ability to reach patients, offers a pithy summation: "Acupuncture education, and the conventional acupuncture business model, ought to come with a warning label, the way cigarettes do: NOT SUSTAINABLE. May take years of your life and leave you with nothing, except huge student loans."
Comment: i view these data as a call to action. NCCAOM's findings that graduates felt ill-prepared both on business issues and on collaborating with others is a starting place. Addressing business issues needs to be a major national campaign. Graduate them and they will come doesn't appear to be working.
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Poll finds many experiencing business downturn
Massage Today poll finds 2/3 of therapists seeing decline in clientele amidst economic sluggishness

An online poll from Massage Today is finding that a steady 63%-65% of respondents responded "Yes" when asked: "During this economic climate, have you experienced a reduction in your number of clients?"  Over a fifth (21%) report an increase and the remaining 16% experience their business as more or less unchanged. As of October 5, 2010, 563 individuals had responded to the online poll that was published with the October 2010 edition of the online magazine from MPA Media. A discussion among members of the massage field is available at this Facebook page. The Massage Today poll ran with an article entitled: "Tough Times, Don't Panic: Use your downtime to build your business."

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Use of supplements holds steady
Survey finds supplement sales strong despite, or because of, economic downturn


A survey by an independent polling firm contracted by the Council for Responsible Nutrition (CRN) provoked a press release announcing that Retailers see strong supplement sales as consumer confidence holds steady. 66% of adults "label themselves as supplement users", up from 65% last year and in the same ballpark since 2005. Those classifying themselves as "regular users" also remained even. One supplement singled out as seeing strong growth in sales is Vitamin D. The growth ids associated with emerging science.
Others "reported as steady and growing are probiotics, fish and flaxseed oil, calcium and multiple vitamins." The article quotes a leader of a retailers' trade association sharing that at a recent conference “everyone was speaking of their uptick in supplement sales ...The economic effect seems to be pushing consumers towards supplements to maintain their health, with the high cost of healthcare.” 

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Founder DeVries: Business growth continues
Major CAM managed care firm American Specialty Health in new digs, reports $147-million in 2009 business
 

San Diego-based American Specialty Health Incorporated (ASH) announced in early October that the firm and its subsidiaries, including Healthyroads, will be vacating its 156,000 square feet of existing office space in downtown San Diego. The firm, founded by chairman George DeVries as a chiropractic managed caer firm in 1987, is transitioning to complex in the Sorrento Mesa business district where ASH will inhabit two buildings: a 81,000 square-foot building to house Healthyroads and the rest of ASH operations a 107,000 square foot building. In the release, the firm noted that its revenues reached $147-million in 2009, up roughly 50% from a decade earlier.


Hospital Integration

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Nation's most significant integrative care initiative
Penny George Institute-Allina publish web-available 2010 report on outcomes of inpatient integrative care


Those wanting a look inside the philosophy, practice, outcomes and educational initiatives of the nation's largest hospital-based integrative health care operation will be quick to examine the 32-page pdf Overview and Outcomes Report 2010 from the Penny George Institute. Each month, staff provides "enhanced care" through 900 inpatient visits and 700 outpatient visits at Abbott Northwestern Hospital, the largest in the Allina Hospitals & Clinics system. Integrative care services offered by the operation's 15 credentialed providers are listed. Page 15 begins a synopsis of research projects under way and completed at the Institute, which as part of its mission to be a pilot project for the nation is documenting and sharing its experience. New outcomes of a resilience training on depression among hospital employees are reported, showing benefits across depression, functionality and presenteeism indicators.
The support of system medical doctors of the operation, led by Lori Knutson, RN, BS-HN, has grown continuously as they have observed the experience of the benefits to patients. Abbott is also high on the project, if the giving of its foundation is any indication. The Institute received a $1.9-million grant from Abbott's charitable arm  in 2009.


Education

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Karan: Excited with the national expansion
RW Johnson grant supports Kent State University adoption of Urban Zen self-care curriculum for nurses


A notice in the October 2010 issue of the e-news from Urban Zen (UZ), announces that Urban Zen's "special curriculum of self-care for nurses" is presently being taught at Kent State University. Urban Zen is the Donna Karan-backed initiative that includes the Urban Zen Integrative Therapy (UZIT) program. The Kent State program is one of the largest nursing programs in the country. The inclusion of the program was made possible through a grant from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. The note in the UZ newsletter adds that the development "was made possible by an Urban Zen friend and supporter" who was not named. UZIT anticipates that the Kent State University program will be "the first of many nursing and medical schools that incorporate the UZIT curriculum into the traditional healthcare training to allow doctors and nurses to learn and incorporate self-care into their professional practice and their personal well-being." In her introductory note in the bulletin, Karan writes: "I am so very proud to share with you that my dream to have Urban Zen Integrative Therapists across the country is coming true."
Comment: "Self-care and meditation coming/We're finally caring for ourselves/This summer I heard my inner voice/More healing in Ohio/More healing in Ohio." Apologies, Neil.
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Relationship iniitated through MS CAM program leaders
Georgetown University and Bastyr University linked in inter-disciplinary, inter-institutional relationship


A model inter-institutional relationship may help bridge the chasm that separates health professions education in conventional academic health centers from institutions educating students for the distinctly licensed integrative practice ("CAM") professions. Says one leader: "I believe we are poised to make an important advance in how the future training of health professionals may evolve." The speaker is Adi Haramati, PhD, integrative medicine leader at Georgetown University, describing a new relationship between Georgetown and Bastyr University relative to Bastyr's naturopathic medical program and Georgetown's MS CAM program. Haramati and his co-director Hakima Amri, PhD are exploring similar relationships with chiropractic schools and other health professions institutions. Bastyr's vice president and provost Tim Callahan, PhD led the relationship development inside Bastyr. The developers "would like nothing more" than to see this bridge-building relationship be used as a model for other academic health centers and CAM institutions. The exchange is described in more detail in this Integrator article.

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Partners with medical society for IM session
Marino Center and Massachusetts Medical Society combine for October 28 integrative medicine conference


Anne McCaffrey, MD, medical director of the Marino Center, a large integrative clinic in the Boston area, to announce the October 28th
program entitled Integrative Medicine 101: Practical Approaches to Integrative Medicine for Primary Care Providers that Marino is producing. The session is sponsored by the Massachusetts Medical Society. McCaffrey says the target audience is primary care providers "who are naive to Integrative Medicine/CAM therapies, rather than an in-depth conference in any specific area." The 2009 iteration was "a sold out show and got very good evaluations from the majority of our attendees."
Comment: This news piece, and that below, are remarkable evidence on the in-migration of integrative thinking into conventional environments.
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True North's Dahlborg: Teaching integrative business modeling
Integrative medicine center True North teaches its distinct business model to Maine Dartmouth Family Medicine program


"A new paradigm of practice management in an integrative setting." This is the framing in a September 27, 2010 press release from the True North Health Center regarding a talk the clinic's executive director, Tom Dahlborg, gave to 3rd year residents at the Maine Dartmouth Family Medicine program. The clinic has offered clinical rotations to residents in recent years. This was the first venture into teaching the business side of integrative care. The concepts may be new. At True North,
"practitioners have the flexibility of choosing their own schedules and how much time they spend with patients, and also contribute to organization-wide decision-making, research studies, and collaborative case presentations." Dahlborg, who has 21 years of healthcare administration experience including 5 as True North's director, reportedly "emphasized the importance of not only working alongside practitioners who have training in other modalities, but truly collaborating with one another." The model Dahlborg shared includes "integrated charts, collaborative development of patient care plans, participation in monthly circle case presentations, and appropriate in-house referrals." Maine Dartmouth Family Medicine Residency Program is one of eight Integrative Medicine in Residency (IMR) pilot sites associated with the Arizona Center for Integrative Medicine.
Comment: I confess to being a fan of mutual adoration societies, especially those that involve me. So having tracked the True North work of medical director and founder Bethany Hayes, MD, Dahlborg and others for a long while I was, as my father would have put it, tickled to receive one of their releases, on October 4, 2010, that featured the Integrator coverage of True North over time. 

Organizations

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Alliance for Natural Health takes on Wikipedia over biases against natural medicine


Integrator reader and sometimes contributor Tom Ballard, RN, ND pointed me to an article on the Alliance for Natural Health (ANH) website entitled Wikipedia's Anti-Natural Health Slant. The article cites a half-dozen grievances that led to the conclusion that "the (Wikierdia) articles that are pro-health freedom or integrative medicine perspectives are consistently gutted, removed, or vandalized." Examples are entries related to orthomolecular medicine, anti-aging medicine, the definition of nutritionist and a page describing Julian Whitaker, MD. The writer quotes Wikipedia co-founder, Larry Sanger, who has exited a relationship with the organization because, among other things, of "frequently unreliable content." He clarifies: "In some fields and some topics, there are groups who ‘squat' on articles and insist on making them reflect their own specific biases." ANH recommends a separate site, Wiki4CAM, otherwise known as the Complementary and Alternative Medicine Encyclopedia.

Comment: Dana Ullman, MPH provides a look into one Wikipedia hotspot in this article: Where is Your Definition Tonight? Dana Ullman on the Virtual War in Wikipedia over Homeopathy
Image
Chiro organization models successful funding campaign
A model for fund-raising: Foundation 4 Chiropractic Progress reaches over 1500 regular contributors


Comment: The one profession associated with integrative practice that has any significant financial clout is chiropractic, or chiropractic medicine, as some put it. One leg upon which the discipline stands is the educational/promotional Foundation for Chiropractic Progress (F4CP). The foundation's focus is on creating visibility for the profession. The funders include members of the profession (over 1500 have committed to regular contributions), state associations, national organizations, educational institutions and members of the industry. The organization's September 2010 e-newsletter ticked off the visibility this has produced, namely, "
pro chiropractic advertisements in eight prominent newspapers and magazines - The Wall Street Journal, Working Mother, Sports Illustrated, Quad City Times, USA Today (Florida), San Francisco Chronicle and the Pro Football Hall of Fame Yearbook." The combined circulation: roughly 7-million. The newsletter went on to honor new commitments and actions. Credit the work of Garrett Cuneo, F4CP executive and past American Chiropractic Association executive and his powerful board, for moving this agency. For those of you linked to other professions with national agendas, whether or not it is the F4CP focus on marketing and visibility, this organization models how to set up a base, and the can-do ability to chip in collectively to make things happen.

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Niemtzow: First MD on AAAOM board
AAAOM breaks pattern, names leading medical acupuncturist Niemtzow to Board


In a September 17, 2010 notice to members entitled "
The AAAOM and the Middle Way," the American Association of Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine broke with a historic practice and named a medical acupuncturist, Richard Niemtzow, MD, to its board of directors. The AAAOM announcement sets this context:
"As you know, the mission of the AAAOM is to promote the professional practice of Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine to enhance the public's health and well being. In the evolving and increasingly complex healthcare landscape, we strongly believe that respecting the diversity of the broad AOM community through open dialog and sincere collaboration is required for us to achieve this mission in the long term. We value diverse perspectives while at the same time strive to find common ground that will help unify the AOM profession and expand our role in healthcare in this country going forward."
The appointment of Niemtzow, the editor in chief of Medical Acupuncture, the journal of the MD acupuncturist membership organization, is positioned as "just one of many steps we will be taking to help create a stronger and more unified profession, advocating for the AOM community." Then, more context: "AAAOM believes in applying the principles of the 'middle way,' such as compassion, cooperation, coalition, and community--which will serve all of us well as we go forward together. This represents the balance we wish to create between our traditional roots and the collaboration we need in our contemporary professional landscape."
Comment: I print the comments at length as the new ground on which the AAAOM board is standing is still new. The invocation suggest a felt need for the spirits of the grandfathers and grandmothers to stabilize this foundation. The tensions in the field between those who would like to own needles as a profession, and those, such as the AAAOM board, who believe others have rights, is still strong. This is a great move.   

Publications Sept 27

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Riley: Differences with new ATHM ownership
Editor Riley and team resign from Alternative Therapies in Health and Medicine


In July 2010,
Alternative Therapies in Health and Medicine, the first peer-review publication devoted to the field, was passed from Innovision Health Media into the hands of a new owner. On September 27, 2010, long-time integrative medicine leader (and perhaps the person who first dubbed the phrase "integrative medicine") David Riley, MD and his team sent an electronic letter announcing that the team was resigning. I publish it here in full:
"Dear Alternative Therapies in Health and Medicine supporters,

"The editors of Alternative Therapies in Health and Medicine (ATHM) would like to inform you - our colleagues - that the editorial team of David Riley, Christine Girard, Jason Hao, and Michele Mittelman resigned as a group from ATHM today. We have informed InnoVision Professional Media (IVPM), previously InnoVision Health Media (IVHM) of our decision. We are disappointed to be sending you this letter, so soon after implementing new publication strategies earlier this year.

"On July 1 of this year, American Securities Group and Healthy Directions - the former owners of InnoVision Health Media, elected to offer InnoVision Health Media (IVHM) to PMG data services owned and run by Dick Benson. PMG is a service bureau that provides fulfillment and circulation solutions to specialty publishers focusing on consumer and business-to-business publications. Their clients have ranged from Costco - a membership warehouse club to Lifetime Fitness - a national spa and fitness chain. After working closely with Dick Benson and observing his actions carefully for the past three months, we do not believe that we share a common vision with PMG data services. We are choosing to move forward in a different direction focusing on scholarly rather than consumer publications.  

   
  "After working closely with Dick Benson
and observing his actions carefully for
the past three months we do not believe
that we share a common vision
with PMG data services."


"We believe that we have left Alternative Therapies in Health and Medicine in a much stronger position than when we arrived: the inventory of accepted manuscripts is significantly increased from less than 10 to more than 40 awaiting publication, journal editorial processes have been re-organized, and IVPM has a hard-working editorial and production team in place. As an editorial team we are particularly please with the July special issue on Coherence and the September special issue on nursing, and the upcoming and already edited November special issue on Chinese medicine.

"We intend to move together as an editorial team with new initiatives in scholarly publication.  As most of you know, Alternative Therapies in Health and Medicine was the first scholarly publication indexed by the Nation Library of Medicine and is the only professional journal published by IVPM to have both an impact factor and be indexed. Our mission remains to promote the art and science of integrative medicine and to improve patient centered collaborations. We believe that the best way to do this is to maintain the highest standards of peer review, producing scientific articles and news that is timely, accurate, and a pleasure to read. We hope in the future to work closely with each of you and continue to foster the ongoing debate about the scientific, clinical, historical, legal, and policy issues that affect all of health care and integrative medicine.

"As we evaluate opportunities and options to continue to serve the community of practitioners, health care students in integrative health care we will keep you informed of our plans and hope to work with you as they unfold.  Feel free to contact us if you have any further questions.

"Best regards

"David Riley [MD]  Christine Girard [ND] Jason Hao [LAc] Michele Mittleman [RN]"
Comment: This step puts an exclamation mark on Innovision's slow walk back from Chapter 11 in November 2008, which led to the sale to Healthy Directions, the letting go of former vice president Frank Lampe and the "offering" to Benson and PMG. This news, because I know and respect the Riley-Girard-Mittleman team (I don't know Hao), is a kick to both the head and stomach. Can we not support a quality peer-reviewed publication? I am not entirely disinterested: I write a column for Integrative Medicine: A Clinician's Journal, also owned by PMG presently, and led by Joseph Pizzorno, ND. No news yet on whether there will be changes with that journal. Meantime, I look forward to hearing where Riley and his team go with their future publishing interests. 

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Hawk: Kicks off new online peer-reviewed journal
Call for Submissions: Peer-reviewed Topics in Integrative Health Care launched; Cheryl Hawk, DC, PhD editor in chief


Cheryl Hawk, DC, PhD, CHES sent this note September 17, 2010: "We're very proud to announce the launch of
Topics in Integrative Health Care (TIHC), a peer-reviewed, open-access quarterly online journal." The publication will focus on "advancing the integration of multiple disciplines, both complementary and mainstream, into diverse health care settings in order to provide optimal patient care." Hawk adds that the journal "will emphasize not only the integration of various approaches and settings for the treatment of conditions, but also the integration of health promotion and prevention into all clinical encounters, as well as into both patients' and providers' daily lives." Hawk invites submissions to TIHC. The following themes are tentatively scheduled for the first volume (2010-2011): Winter 2010-Improving the Health of Older Adults; Spring 2011-Physical Activity and Sports/Leisure; and Summer 2011-Approaches to Body-Mind Health and Healing. Hawk's welcoming comments in Volume 1, #1 are available here.
Comment: Hawk is a highly regarded and nationally-recognized chiropractic researcher in the chiropractic field who also serves on the multi-disciplinary Research Working Group of the Academic Consortium for Complementary and Alternative Health Care. She distinguishes herself from many by her depth involvement in wellness, serving as one of two DC leaders in a wellness certification program for chiropractors and participating as the one chiropractic representative at a recent summit on health coaching standards. The first issue is chiropractor-intensive as might be expected, yet the team's editorial line is discipline-neutral and, given the subject matter, the team is actively seeking submissions from those from other disciplines.
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Rakel: Invites submissions for special issue
Call for Papers: Special issue on communication in complementary medicine in 2012 issue of Patient Education Counseling, Rakel to co-edit


David Rakel, MD invites submissions to a special issue in the peer-reviewed Patient Education Counseling planned for 2012 on "Communication in complementary medicine approaches in healthcare."
Rakel, an integrative medicine leader in family medicine at the University of Wisconsin, will co-edit the volume as part of an international team. He writes:
"This theme issue will be wide open in regards to CAM and improving communication among patients and professionals. It would be a great opportunity for professionals from diverse CAM fields to share their insights on the topic."
A note from the publisher, Elsevier, states that "the scope of this special issue is not the state of art of complementary and alternative medicine (CAM) interventions, but rather issues involved in several aspects of the communication about CAM, and especially complementary medicine (CM)." A list of possible topics is here. All types of contributions are welcome: reviews, original empirical work, qualitative papers, models for education and counseling, and organization of CM. Short proposals are urged before December, 1 2010.


Conferences

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2011 event in New York, March 4-6
Integrative Healthcare Symposium will be held on March 4-6, 2011 at the Hilton New York


Integrative Healthcare Symposium will be held on March 4-6, 2011 at the Hilton New York on March 4th - 6th 2011. The event, which distinguishes itself by drawing an MD-focused but multidisciplinary group (MD, RN, DC, ND, LAc, etc.) gathered 1100 practitioners in 2010. Program areas for
2011 are nutrition, integrative oncology, endocrinology, brain & mind health and leadership & policy.  Woodson Merrell, MD is the conference chair. Among the speakers are Rachel Remen, MD, Jeff Bland, PhD, Walter Crinnion, ND, Mark Hyman, MD, Nan Lu, OMD, LAc, David Perlmutter, MD, Lise Alschuler, ND, Ben Kligler, MD, Tierana Low Dog, MD, Alan Gaby, MD, Marcelle Pick, NP and more. (Disclosure: IHS is an  Integrator sponsor and I assist the firm with its policy-related content.)
Comment: Oh yeah, another speaker will be some fellow who writes an electronic newsletter. I'll be offering a look at the year in review in integrative policy and practice. I'll also moderate a separate panel on hospital-based integration, with Lori Knutson, RN, BS-HN, Kligler, and Richard Gannotta, NP, DHA. It's a lively conference and gathering. Make it if you can!

People

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Elliott: Longtime exec honored in naming of building
Chiropractic examination group to honor long-time executive in dedicating the Horace C. Elliott Center


On November 5, 2010, the National Board of Chiropractic Examiners (NBCE) will honor the organization's long-time leader by dedicating the Horace C. Elliott Center on the organization's Greeley, Colorado campus. Elliott has been NBCE's leading executive since 1986.
The action by the NBCE board follows a series of significant honors Elliott has received from chiropractic institutions and agencies. The 15,000 square foot new conference facility will primarily be used for test committee meetings and exam production and other meeting functions. It contains state of the art meeting, sound and teleconferencing technology. Elliot also serves on the Board of the Academic Consortium for Complementary and Alternative Health Care.

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Cohn: Honored with library naming
Tai Sophia names library after Sherman Cohn, JD


Tai Sophia Institute has dedicated and named its library after Sherman Cohn, JD. Cohn, a volunteer leader in the integrative health field, and particularly for acupuncture and Oriental medicine, was honored by Tai Sophia as "a
longtime friend, supporter, generous benefactor, Georgetown University law professor, and Tai Sophia's Chairman of the Board of Trustees." The Sherman L. Cohn Library is described as "by far the best acupuncture library on the East Coast and maybe in the country." The library is open to the public and is viewed as "a great resource to the alternative medicine community and the residents of Howard County and all of Maryland." A newsletter from Tai Sophia spoke of the award as "a fitting tribute to name this extraordinary place of education, research, study, and continued enlightenment." Cohn, a onetime Watergate lawyer, is a sometimes Integrator contributor.

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Haramati: Honored with educator award
Georgetown integrative leader Adi Haramati awarded Master Scholar Award by medical science educators group


The International Association of Medical Science Educators (IAMSE) has named Aviad "Adi" Haramati, PhD, professor of physiology and biophysics at Georgetown University School of Medicine, as the winner of its Master Scholar Award according to an October 1, 2010 release. The release notes that the award "recognizes an IAMSE member who has a distinguished record of educational scholarship, including educational research and/or dissemination of excellent and scholarly approaches to teaching and education." Haramati, a founding member of IAMSE and its first president, is a significant player in academic integrative medicine and specifically in educational integration between those in conventional academic health centers and those educators and institutions associated with the licensed integrative practice disciplines. Haramati's link between programs at Georgetown and Bastyr University, noted elsewhere in this Round-up, was a featured in this recent Integrator article.
 

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Resumes are useful in employment decisions. I provide this background so that you may understand what informs the work which you may employ in your own. I have been involved as an organizer-writer in the emerging fields......moreJohn Weeks
 
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