Dr. Mimi Guarneri Leads Call to Action to Transform Health Care at AIHM Conference

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Transformative and historic turning point, nearly 900 gather at AIHM's People, Planet, Purpose: Global Practitioners United in Health and Healing.

AIHM-President-Mimi-Guarneri

President Mimi Guarneri, MD, welcomes 900 to AIHM

Transcending our silos, we came together in collective purpose toward a new model of health care, with collaboration at the center. Everyone felt the power of our unity.

This October, nearly 900 healthcare providers from around the world gathered in San Diego for the integrative health and medicine event of the year, AIHM's People, Planet, Purpose: Global Practitioners United in Health and Healing. The annual conference of the Academy of Integrative Health & Medicine (AIHM) featured 75 internationally renowned speakers.

The unique combination of heart and science created a transformational experience across professions including medical, chiropractic, naturopathic, nursing and acupuncture, all of whom expressed a belief in collaboration as the way to transform health care.

Luminary faculty member Jean Watson, RN, PhD, AHN-BC, FAAN, said, “All this work is converging in our universe for a new hope for humanity. I was touched by the presence, presentations and the consciousness of all the participants.”

AIHM President Mimi Guarneri, MD, emphasized that we are at a tipping point in history, and inspired attendees with a call to action to “shift the conversation from treating diseases to creating a system that supports the health and well-being of our children, communities and planet.”

Tabatha Parker, ND, AIHM Education Director, said, “The vision of the conference was to create a gathering place to unite and revitalize healthcare providers. Transcending our silos, we came together in collective purpose toward a new model of health care, with collaboration at the center. Everyone felt the power of our unity and acknowledged that the transformation has begun.”

According to AIHM Co-CEO Nancy Sudak, MD, “Those new to the field of integrative health and medicine felt welcomed and inspired, with an immediate sense of community, as did leaders who have worked for decades to manifest change in health care.”

Citing the convergence of key factors, including research on lifestyle change interventions, limitations of high-tech medicine and the new reimbursement scaffolding of the Affordable Care Act, Dean Ornish, MD, pointed out that now is the time for a transformation of the system, embodied by the work of AIHM and many others.

Conference highlights included:

  • Deepak Chopra, MD, inspired with his presentation, “The Future of Wellbeing.” Dr. Chopra’s keynote was preceded by a “Celebration of Life” for esteemed leader, Mitch Gaynor, MD, and can be seen at aihm.org/deepak-chopra
  • AIHM Fellowship Director, Tieraona Low Dog, MD, launched the first interprofessional fellowship of its kind in the world, resulting in an remarkably high number of applications for the inaugural February 2016 class. Applications are still being accepted at aihm.org/fellowship.
  • More than 75 interprofessional speakers provided countless clinical pearls and connected clinicians to the joy of their practice.

The AIHM Awards Ceremony & Gala honored leaders from the movement. Gladys McGarey, MD, MD(H) of The Foundation for Living Medicine was honored with the Lifetime Achievement Award. San Diego local, Deborah Szekely, known as the Godmother of the Wellness Movement, received the Change Maker Award for her work as a prominent activist, philanthropist and writer. Jean Watson, PhD, RN, of the Watson Caring Science Institute, was awarded the Visionary Award for caring science leadership. All three recipients inspired standing ovations from the crowd.

For those who were not able to attend the conference, recordings with more than 80 CMEs/CEUs in Integrative Medicine and Health are available at aihm.org/education.

The AIHM's next Annual Conference will be Oct. 30 - Nov. 3, 2016 in San Diego, CA.

About the Academy of Integrative Health & Medicine (AIHM)
The Academy of Integrative Health & Medicine (AIHM) is an international, interprofessional, membership organization that educates and trains clinicians in integrative health and medicine to assure exemplary health care. AIHM’s training incorporates evidence-informed research, emphasizes person-centered care and embraces global healing traditions. By combining science and compassion, the AIHM is transforming health care.

Become part of the movement, become a member at aihm.org.

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Stephanie "Seth" Romanoff

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