Monday, June 17, 2013

"Yin/Yang: The Marriage Between Conventional and Innovative Medicine"

What’s in a Name?
Executive Director Wendy Chappell, MBA

As integrative doctors we see both sides of the coin, the allopathic training we were given in medical school as well as innovative new ideas that we seek out to help our patients. This “marriage” between mindsets is a very uneasy partnership. Perhaps these two parties should get a divorce. Our title is a bit tongue in cheek. It is meant to stimulate thought, to challenge ourselves as well as society as a whole. The fate of this uneasy marriage may still be undecided. But we can assure you that our meeting will be an intense therapy session, full of questioning the roots and effects of our actions on healing and disease.

What started out as a study/support group of doctors in the Great Lakes Region 30 years ago (GLACM) was changed to “The International College of Integrative Medicine” in 2001. Why is it that one of the smallest medical associations in existence chose to describe themselves with such grandiose words? The founders of ICIM were ambitious. They had a vision, not of numbers but of a scope of understanding that stretched beyond National borders and current conventions of healing. Follow me through some of the historic notes that illustrate the development of our name.
An unmitigated success is the only way to describe the XII International Congress of GLACM held at the Amway Grand Plaza….Three and a half foreign countries were represented:  Canada, Belgium, and Switzerland.  New member John Trowbridge attended from the “1/2” foreign country.  Do you remember the Lone Star State used to be an independent country with embassies before they became part of the United States?  Great Lake Gazette October 1989

Membership Escalates: Whether it be from Pacific Rim countries, the Northern Border, the Caribbean, or even across the pond, Northern Hemispheres physicians have suddenly recognized the leadership of GLACM and are attending and joining this alternative medical group. North American members from Florida to Dakota’s the Carolina’s to Lake Meade recognize the leadership/training qualities, and are expanding/offering their training to other degreed individuals.  They being M.D.’s, D.O.’s, DVM’s, DDS’s, DC’s, ND’s, and DPM’s.  Great Lakes Gazette Fall 1994

Several members have suggested that we consider changing the name of GLACM reflecting our membership which is now throughout the United States and also in Australia and Indonesia.  Your Board of Directors requests that each member give thought to this and send your suggestions to our executive director.  Bear in mind if there is to be a new name, it should have the word “COLLEGE” within its title for eventual recognition as a teaching body.  Great Lakes Gazette Spring 1996  

The prospect of a new name—to recognize our evolving national and even global theme—will be entertained, with suggestions sought from members.  GLCCM Board Meeting September 2000

"We have been trained as "conventional" physicians, learning well the accepted diagnostic and treatment protocols.  And with these, we integrated the best of modern medical technologies, moving the new knowledge from research reports into practical programs that change patients lives.  We offer more than an "alternative" choice.  We do more than just "complement" usual medical care.  In reality, we "integrate" tried-and-true conventional medical care and the newest information available from research conducted by medical schools and clinical practitioners from around the world.  Hence, our new name."  ICIM Gazette Summer 2001

"Don't misunderstand," Dr. C.(Terry Chappell) stated - "we're not out to be the biggest
organization of our kind, but the best.  We've listened carefully to what members of our
community need and want.  We've found today's health professionals are struggling with
escalating conference costs, finding it difficult to decide which conferences are really

worth attending, and which associations will give them the biggest 'bang for the buck'.  No question - it's going to be us." ICIM Gazette, 2001

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