John Weeks July 2013 Integrator Round-up covering the topics of Integrative health care policy, research and publications, integrative practice, academic medicine, professions, natural products, conferences, people

From Google Alerts: Links to Integrative Medicine in Health Systems and Communities for July 2013

This monthly report includes 28 segments from Google Alerts on integrative medicine developments in health systems plus 16 segments from the community for June 1, 2013-July 6, 2013. These came via requests for “integrative medicine,” “integrative oncology,” “alternative medicine” and “complementary and alternative medicine.” A lot of negative media play this month from Paul Offit, MD’s book Do You Believe in Magic? This month had the highest level of links yet from practitioners of integrative medicine in the community. Notably the IM links include naturopathic doctors and practitioners of acupuncture and Oriental medicine. In popular use, integrative medicine is not restricted to MDs/DOs. See all 44 links here.


Second major pain group creates focus on integrative pain strategies

The American Society of Regional Anesthesia and Pain Medicine has announced that it will offer a half-day Special Session Workshop: Complementary and Alternative Medicine on November 22, 2013, in Phoenix. The workshop is part of the organization’s annual meeting. The objectives feature acupuncture, mind-body, Tai chi, and (explicitly) osteopathic manipulative therapy. (Italics added.) The statement of purpose includes: “Despite development of new drugs and advancement in interventional and surgical procedures for chronic pain management, non-pharmacological therapies such as acupuncture, Tai Chi/mind-body control, and osteopathic manipulative treatment have become increasingly popular due to unsatisfactory outcomes of or adverse effects and risks related to pharmacological and interventional treatments.”

Comment: This follows a May 2013 American Pain Society meeting that, for the first time, included a focus on  complementary and alternative medicine. Nice to see the direction, and the content. The day will come when these planners will realize that the focus on only osteopathic manipulative therapy, thereby excluding the practitioners from whom most patients receive manipulative therapy, is simply offensive.


Update: Role of Arya  Nielsen, PhD, LAc in the Joint Commission’s interest in non-pharmacological approaches

Last month I shared the exciting news that the Joint Commission is re-opening its views on non-pharmacological approaches to pain management. (See “Joint Commission to create expert panel to further develop non-pharmacological pain standards” at this link.) I have since learned from Ben Kligler, MD, MPH that the prime mover behind the effort is Arya Nielsen, PhD, LAc, from the Department of Integrative Medicine at Beth Israel. Nielsen engaged in a fine act of transdisciplinary work by submitting information to the Joint Commission about acupuncture while asking for a broader look at all non-pharmacological approaches. Exemplary interprofessional behavior!