What is Integrative Medicine?

Integrative medicine describes an approach to health and medicine that seeks to integrate complementary and alternative healing philosophies and approaches with conventional medical care, neither rejecting conventional care nor accepting alternative therapies uncritically.

Integrative medicine focuses on prevention, treating the whole person (mind, body, spirit and community), a collaborative relationship between practitioners and patients, and evidence-based therapies that go beyond treating disease to provide optimal health.

The Core Principles of Integrative Medicine

  • Patient and practitioner are partners in the healing process.
  • All factors that influence health, wellness, and disease are taken into consideration, including mind, spirit, and community, as well as the body.
  • Appropriate use of both conventional and alternative methods facilitates the body's innate healing response.
  • Effective interventions that are natural and less invasive should be used whenever possible.
  • Integrative medicine neither rejects conventional medicine nor accepts alternative therapies uncritically.
  • Good medicine is based in good science. It is inquiry-driven and open to new paradigms.
  • Alongside the concept of treatment, the broader concepts of health promotion and the prevention of illness are paramount.
  • Practitioners of integrative medicine should exemplify its principles and commit themselves to self-exploration and self-development.

For additional information on Integrative Medicine: www.aihm.org