American College of Preventive Medicine Announces Partnership to Translate Physician Competencies in Lifestyle Medicine into Practice

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The American College of Preventive Medicine (ACPM) has announced a partnership with the Ardmore Institute of Health to form an expert steering committee to develop a framework, based on established physician competencies, which would facilitate and advance the adoption of lifestyle medicine into clinical practice.

Lifestyle medicine is the systematic practice of assisting individuals and families to adopt and sustain behaviors that can improve health and quality of life. While evidence clearly shows lifestyle interventions and behavior change to be the most effective first-line of therapy for reducing chronic disease, the majority of physicians are not following these guidelines, citing lack of knowledge, skill, or confidence in counseling patients about lifestyle interventions.

“With the enormous potential effects of health behavior change on mortality, morbidity, and health care costs, the motivation for embracing the concept of lifestyle medicine is clear,” explained Miriam Alexander, MD, MPH, FACPM, President of ACPM. “We have a consensus set of competencies; now we need a blueprint for developing curricula, practice tools, and advocacy materials, all of which will support physicians in implementing lifestyle medicine best practices.”

The panel, which will convene February 20, 2013 at ACPM’s Preventive Medicine 2013 conference in Scottsdale, AZ, is charged with identifying a pathway for helping physicians adopt lifestyle medicine in their clinical practice. Panel members, mostly recognized leaders in preventive medicine, bring expertise and perspectives from various workplace settings and will contribute important stakeholder perspectives, such as clinical practice, academic medicine, public health, health promotion research, health plans and insurance providers, professional medical societies, and corporate employers. The panel’s efforts will focus on the physician competencies for prescribing lifestyle medicine previously published in JAMA (Lianov L; Johnson M. Physician competencies for prescribing lifestyle medicine. JAMA. 2010; 304(2):202-3). Liana Lianov, MD, MPH, FACPM, ACPM’s Public Health and General Preventive Medicine Regent, President of the American College of Lifestyle Medicine, and chair of ACPM’s Lifestyle Medicine Task Force, has been tapped to lead the panel. “This group of thought leaders will explore multiple aspects of lifestyle medicine practice and policy and deliver a plan for integrating lifestyle medicine into clinical practice, health care delivery systems, and payment/reimbursement models,” says Dr. Lianov. “The plan will identify ways to empower key stakeholders, from primary care physicians in the trenches to health care delivery systems struggling to adapt to reforms that reward improved outcomes for populations, with proven approaches to reducing risk and preventing and reversing disease burden. It’s an exciting undertaking which I’m honored to lead.”

Funding for the initiative was provided by the Ardmore Institute of Health. “We are proud to support this effort which engages the brightest minds in the field to advance the cause of behavioral change, risk reduction, and the prevention and treatment of disease,” noted Sid Lloyd, President and CEO of the Ardmore Health Institute. “This is an important and timely endeavor, and one that could have significant and lasting impact on our nation’s healthcare system.”

About the American College of Preventive Medicine
Founded in 1954, the American College of Preventive Medicine (ACPM) is a U.S.-based physician organization focused on practice, research, publication, and teaching of evidence-based preventive medicine. As the umbrella society for the specialty of Preventive Medicine and physicians dedicated to prevention, ACPM seeks to improve the health of individuals and populations through evidence-based health promotion, disease prevention, and systems-based approaches to improving health and health care. For more information, visit

About Ardmore Institute of Health
Ardmore Institute of Health (AIH) is a public charity on a mission to improve the health and vitality of people to live more meaningful lives. Headquartered in Ardmore, OK, AIH makes the journey toward better health as simple, fun and exciting as possible in each product it develops, such as its New York Times best-selling, "The Full Plate Diet."

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Michael A. Barry, CAE
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