The American Board of Integrative Medicine (ABoIM) defines integrative medicine as the practice of medicine that reaffirms the importance of the relationship between practitioner and patient, focuses on the whole person, is informed by evidence, and makes use of all appropriate therapeutic approaches, healthcare professionals and disciplines to achieve optimal health and healing. Integrative medicine, which is often referred to as complementary and alternative medicine (CAM), is a rapidly expanding field of medicine that combines the best techniques of conventional medicine with those of alternative treatments to treat to body as a whole and provide the best method(s) for healing.

The emerging ABoIM is overseen by the American Board for Physician Specialties (ABPS). Through the ABPS, the American Board of Integrative Medicine qualifies successful board certified candidates to present themselves as trained specialists in the field of integrative medicine. The ABPS has also recently introduced specialization in integrative medicine for emerging medical doctors with over 50 medical schools in the US offering classes and specializations in CAM.

For more information about certification in integrative medicine and specialization opportunities, please visit the ABPS website here.

The National Institute of Health is the nation’s medical research agency. They support scientific studies that test new medical treatments to provide evidence of efficacy, and turn innovation into health. The primary NIH organization for research on Complementary and Alternative Medicine is the National Centre for Complementary and Alternative Medicine (NCCAM). For more information on complementary and alternative medicine, and on research in the field of CAM, please click on the link below to visit the NCCAM website.

For additional information on the basic practices of CAM, please read the Mayo Clinic’s article about complementary and alternative medicine by clicking here.