UA Center for Integrative Medicine Awarded $1.7 Million to Advance Integrative Primary Care

Sep 10, 2014

The Arizona Center for Integrative Medicine (AzCIM) at the University of Arizona College of Medicine – Tucson has been awarded a three-year, $1.7 million cooperative agreement by the U.S. Health Resources and Services Administration Bureau of Health Professions, Division of Public Health and Interdisciplinary Education, to establish a Center for Integrative Medicine in Primary Care (CIMPC), the first of its kind in a movement toward integrative interprofessional patient care.

AzCIM, founded at the UA in 1994 by Andrew Weil, MD, is a world leader in integrative medicine education, research and clinical care, with training programs for practicing physicians, residents, medical students and other health-care providers. To date, the center has trained more than 1,000 practicing physicians and is delivering curriculum in 53 primary care residencies.

“AzCIM has been educating leaders in integrative medicine for 20 years now, and we are so pleased to be validated by this award as an authority that will ultimately affect how primary care is delivered,” said Patricia Lebensohn, MD, CIMPC principal investigator, director of the AzCIM Integrative Medicine in Residency program and UA professor of family and community medicine. “Our ultimate goal in establishing the CIMPC is to create effective interprofessional teams that will use integrative medicine to help eliminate health disparities in primary care and promote healthy communities.”

The CIMPC designation will provide AzCIM with the resources to incorporate evidence-based integrative medicine curricula into existing primary care residencies and other health professions’ training programs. Additionally, AzCIM will develop an online platform of integrative medicine curricula and best practices for primary care health professionals, and serve as a patient portal for integrative practitioners working with underserved populations.

The CIMPC interprofessional leadership is comprised of representatives from the five colleges at the UA’s Arizona Health Sciences Center: College of Medicine – Tucson, College of Medicine – Phoenix, College of Nursing, College of Pharmacy and UA Mel and Enid Zuckerman College of Public Health.

“The Arizona Health Sciences Center is proud to support the Arizona Center for Integrative Medicine’s pioneering work in integrative medicine and this collaboration will further enrich offerings throughout AHSC programs,” said Joe G. N. Garcia, MD, UA senior vice president for health sciences and interim dean, UA College of Medicine – Tucson. “This effort spearheaded at our university will strongly contribute to one of our goals: to establish national leadership in interdisciplinary education and practice.”

At the national level, the CIMPC will collaborate with organizations such as the Consortium of Academic Health Centers for Integrative Medicine, the American Academy of Pediatrics, the Society of General Internal Medicine, the Society of Teachers of Family Medicine, and the Association for Prevention Teaching and Research to accomplish its goals.

“We are honored to have the opportunity to collaborate in a truly interprofessional way across the four AHSC colleges, said Victoria Maizes MD,” executive director of AzCIM and UA professor of medicine, family medicine and public health. “This new curricular development project furthers our mission to provide outstanding education in integrative medicine to a broader audience of health-care professionals, as well as to the public.”

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About the University of Arizona Center for Integrative Medicine

The University of Arizona Center for Integrative Medicine (AzCIM) is leading the transformation of health care by creating, educating and actively supporting a community that embodies the philosophy and practice of healing-oriented medicine. AzCIM is internationally recognized for its evidence-based clinical practice, innovative educational programs, and research that substantiates the field of integrative medicine and influences public policy. Since its creation in 1994, AzCIM’s vision of making integrative care available to all is being realized worldwide: graduates now are guiding more than one million patients to take a greater role in their health and healing. To learn more about AzCIM, please visit www.azcim.org
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