Integrative Health Competencies for Primary Care Professionals
March 15, 2016
National Center for Integrative Primary Healthcare (NCIPH) , a project backed by a $1.7-million grant from the U.S. Health Resources and Services Administrating (HRSA). The mission is nothing less than to establish the Center as “the first of its kind in a movement toward integrative interprofessional patient care.” The NCIPH is leveraged to spread the integrative model nationally. While the focus is on medical doctors, the model includes chiropractors, advanced practice nurses, naturopathic doctors, licensed acupuncturists and others as part the target audience. Since late 2014, the NCIPH has been located at the Arizona Center for Integrative Medicine (AzCIM), founded by author and educator Andy Weil, MD. The initiative’s clout is boosted through a partnership with the Academic Consortium for Integrative Medicine and Health (The Consortium). The Consortium boasts over 60 medical schools as members. The first step is to create a “set of competencies and educational materials relevant to and appropriate for use across the entire interprofessional spectrum of primary care practitioners.” The process was led through their 16 member Interprofessional Leadership Team chaired by Ben Kligler, MD, MPH (pictured right). Subgroups of chiropractors, naturopathic doctors, acupuncturists and others were convened to support the development. The NCIPH has now published and declared the following as “Integrative Health Competencies for Primary Care Professionals”:
- Practice patient-centered and relationship-based care.
- Obtain an integrative health history which includes mind-body-spirit, nutrition, and the use of both conventional and integrative therapies.
- Collaborate with individuals and families to develop a personalized plan of care to promote health and well-being, which incorporates integrative approaches including lifestyle counseling and the use of mind-body strategies.
- Demonstrate skills in understanding and utilizing the evidence as it pertains specifically to integrative healthcare.
- Demonstrate basic knowledge on the major health professions both integrative and conventional.
- Facilitate behavior change in individuals, families and communities.
- Work effectively as a member of an interprofessional team.
- Practice self-care.
- Demonstrate skills to incorporate integrative healthcare into community settings and into the healthcare system at large.
- Incorporate ethical standards of practice into all interactions with individuals, organizations and communities