ECIM 2015 Global Summit Published Abstracts Online at European Journal of Integrative Medicine (EuJIM)

Published Summary: Journal of Integrative Medicine (JIM), Volume 13 Number 6 November 2015


The evidence base for Integrative Medicine and Healthcare is extensive and global

One of the leading global agencies supporting evidence base research in the academic field of Integrative Medicine is the  National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health (NCCIH). The NCCIH is 1 of the 27 Institutes, Centers, and Offices that make up the National Institutes of Health (NIH) within the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. The NCCIH is the U.S. Federal Government’s lead agency for scientific research on complementary and integrative health approaches:

Large population-based surveys have found that the use of alternative medicine—unproven practices used in place of conventional medicine—is rare. Integrative health care, defined as a comprehensive, often interdisciplinary approach to treatment, prevention and health promotion that brings together complementary and conventional therapies, is more common. The use of an integrative approach to health and wellness has grown within care settings across the United States, including hospitals, hospices, and military health facilities.

Worldwide commitment to academic excellence includes:

Academic papers are published in prestigious medical journals such as BMJ, AJM and Oxford Journals as well as specialized journals such as Global Advances in Health and Medicine(GAM); European Journal of Integrative Medicine (EJIM); Journal of Integrative Medicine (JIM); Advances in Integrative Medicine; and Explore: The Journal of Science and Healing.

An example of one of the founding academic medical centers for integrative medicine is the Integrative Medicine Program at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai, Department of Family Medicine and Community Health. This center initially evolved from a private medical clinic called The Center for Health and Healing located in NYC founded Dr. Woodson Merrill MD and its Center Institute for Research and Education in Integrative Medicine (CIRE-IM) led by Dr. Benjamin Kligler MD, Professor of Family Medicine and Community Health at Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai, who is now the Executive Director of the US Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) Veterans Health Administration’s (VHA) National Office of Patient Centered Care and Cultural Transformation.

Highlight of reports and research: 

Bravewell Report on The Efficacy and Cost-Effectiveness of Integrative Medicine: A Review of the Medical and Corporate Literature (2010)

Bravewell Report on How Integrative Medicine is Being Practiced in Clinical Centers Across the United States (2012)

Outsider perspective on The process of care in integrative health care settings – a qualitative study of US practices (2014) Suzanne Grant, PhD University of Western Sydney and Sydney Cancer Centre at Royal Prince Albert Hospital

Written Evidence for Integrative Medicine (IM) was delivered to the UK Parliament in 2013, which was prepared for publication July 2014.

Long term conditions (LTC) , multimorbidity and polypharmacy challenge the single disease model on which most current health care, best practice, research, and education is based.

The effectiveness and cost-effectiveness of care for LTCs could be greatly enhanced by integrating Complementary Medicine (CM) and other patient-centred self-care and enabling approaches alongside conventional therapy. This is termed Integrated or Integrative Medicine (IM), defined by the Consortium of Academic Health Centers (53 centres in North America, including some of the most prestigious) as: “the practice of medicine that reaffirms the importance of the relationship between practitioner and patient, focuses on the whole person, is informed by evidence, and makes use of all appropriate therapeutic approaches, healthcare professionals and disciplines to achieve optimal health and healing”.

Oxford Journal’s Journal of the National Cancer Institute (JNCI Monographs) 2014 issue on Integrative Oncology:

 Academic Health Centers and the Growth of Integrative Medicine

 Building the Evidence Base for Integrative Approaches to Care for Cancer Patients

 Advancing the Science of Integrative Oncology to Inform Patient-Centered Care for Cancer Survivors

European Journal on Integrative Medicine Special Issue 2014 on Patients Safety in Integrative Health Care

Extensive research (2002-2015) comes from experts such as Claudia Witt, MD MBA of the University of Zurich and UniversityZurich Hospital Center for Complementary and Integrative Medicine.

Specific research for medical student, post-graduate and professional education in Integrative Medicine via Victoria Maizes, MD Medical Director of the Fellowship at University of Arizona Center for Integrative Medicine:

  • Maizes V, Silverman H, Lebensohn P, Koithan M, Kligler B, Rakel D, Schneider C, Kohatsu W, Hayes M, Weil A.  Integrative Family Medicine: An innovation in post-graduate education. Academic Medicine 2006, 81(6):583-9
  • Kligler B, Koithan M, Maizes V, Hayes M, Schneider S, Lebensohn P, Hadley S.  Competency-based evaluation tools for integrative medicine training in family medicine residency: A pilot study. BMC Medical Education, 2007, 7:7.
  • Lebensohn P, Campos-Outcalt D, Senf J, Pugno P.  Experience with a four-year residency: The University of Arizona Family Medicine Residency. Fam Med 2007, 39(7).
  • Kligler B, Lebensohn P, Koithan M, Schneider C, Rakel D, Cook P, Kohatsu W, Maizes V.  Measuring  the “whole system” outcomes of an educational innovation: Experience from the Integrative Family Medicine Program.  Fam Med 2009, 41(5):342-9.
  • Benn R, Maizes V, Guerrera M, Sierpina V, Cook P, Lebensohn P.  Integrative Medicine in Residency: Assessing curricular needs in eight programs.  Fam Med 2009, 41(10):708-14.
  • Lebensohn P, Kligler B, Dodds S, Schneider C, Sroka S, Benn R, Cook P, Guerrera M, Low Dog T, Sirpina V, Teets R, Waxman D, Woytowicz J, Weil A, & Maizes V. Integrative Medicine in Residency Education: Developing competency through online curriculum training. J Grad Med Educ. 2012;3(1):76-82
  • Lebensohn P, Dodds S, Benn R, Brooks AJ, Birch M, Cook C, Schneider C, Sroka S, Waxman D, Maizes V.  Resident wellness behaviors:  Relationship to stress, depression, and burnout. Fam Med. 2013; 45(8):541-549.
  • Lebensohn P, Dodds S, Brooks AJ, Cook P, Guerrera M, Sierpina V, Teets R, Woytowicz J, Maizes V. Increasing resident recruitment into family medicine: Effect of a unique curriculum in integrative medicine. EXPLORE: The Journal of Science and Healing. 2014; 10(3):187-192.

In India, Soukya Foundation, State Government Department of AYUSH and Department of Health and Family Welfare pilot program article based on Ecology, climate change, and coping mechanisms for health and livelihoods undertaken by the Centre for Ecological Economics and Natural Resources, Institute for Social and Economic Change, Bangalore and Centre for Research in Urban Affairs –Journal of Holistic Healthcare, Vol. 12 Issue 2 Summer 2015