Could It Be? Texas to Create a Board of Integrative Medicine!

April 19, 2011
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medical signAs biased as most of the medical community is against Integrative Medicine, which includes natural health approaches, it’s heartening indeed that Texas may recognize it and even set up a board that understand it!

In the Texas legislature, Rep. Bill Zedler has introduced a bill, HB 2455, to create the Texas Board of Integrative Medicine.

Western medicine has historically been extremely biased against integrative medicine. That’s because Western docs don’t understand complementary and alternative medicine. Because they have a different approach, they mistrust CAM, and this contributes to a hostile environment on state medical boards. How can they fairly ascertain the state of affairs if they don’t understand the integrative approach or utilize it themselves? Because of this, state medical boards regularly favor conventional treatments, with complementary and alternative treatments being denigrated or worse. Integrative practitioners face personal attacks by medical boards, and it is an uphill battle to defend their practice, as we have reported to you previously.

Some states, like Texas, have some strong due process protections for doctors, but rules are not always followed if the medical board itself is biased. HB2455 could be an important step towards evening that playing field. It creates a board exclusively for integrative medicine, which will consist of “six members who are physicians and who practice integrative medicine”—and who, therefore, will have a full and unbiased understanding of CAM—and three members who represent the public and are not licensed or trained in a healthcare profession.

The bill defines “integrative medicine” as “a medical system of diagnosing, treating, or correcting real or imagined human diseases, injuries, ailments, infirmities and deformities of a physical or mental origin and includes acupuncture, chelation therapy, homeopathy, minor surgery, and nonsurgical methods, the use of devices, physical, electrical, hygienic, and sanitary measures, and all forms of physical agents and modalities, neuromuscular integration, nutrition, orthomolecular therapy, and pharmaceutical medicine.”

There’s a second bill in Texas that is exciting as well. HB1013, which relates to the powers and duties of the Texas Medical Board. It includes provisions such as banning anonymous complaints against doctors, and guaranteeing jury trials for doctors whose licenses are being revoked. Generally, it gives more due process rights for all doctors, including doctors who practice integrative medicine. The ban on anonymous complaints is important because doctors will sometimes lodge anonymous and false complaints on other doctors to get rid of their competition. A jury trial is important, because it allows for an independent review outside of a potentially biased board.

If you are a resident of Texas, please contact your legislators immediately and ask them to support this bill!

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5 Responses to “Could It Be? Texas to Create a Board of Integrative Medicine!”

  1. Judith says:

    I agree with Doris. Its a move who’s time has come in all states. There have been questionable tactics over time to the detriment of some of these practitioners who provide a type of medicine that is more natural, less invasive, more effective and a type of medicine that many informed people prefer.

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  2. doris hadorn says:

    Really proud of the work you guys are doing to keep our holistic medicine from the ‘ ax’ of FDA and Big Pharma !! Boy …they are NOT happy over this little turn of events….if we can scream loud enough to make it happen !!!! Awesome !!!

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  3. Ona says:

    I whole heartedly agree with the state bills to establish integrative state medicine boards, but I disagree with banning anonymous complaints. Even though the Texas state medical board allows for anonymous complaints, two Texas nurses, who made anonymous complaints about the unsafe practices of a physician who had previously been under state board review, were arrested, charged, and fired. After much time and expensive legal representation they have been cleared of felony misuse of official information, yet they have since been unable to find jobs.

    It’s important that the public and medical professionals have an option to anonymously report a suspect physician’s dangerous actions or negligence. The Texas nurses’ incident clearly illustrates the problems that can beset individuals making good faith complaints against an unsafe physician and of government corruption, in this case a corrupt county sheriff and district attorney. Blaming the individual reporting a suspect physician is wrong. It is the board’s responsibility to investigate, gather information, and make fair decisions. After all, it is the state board’s responsibility to protect the public from unsafe physicians who should not be practicing.

    If the state board is harassing physicians and rendering corrupt decisions, then state law enforcers and state representatives via legislation must address and remedy this problem.

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  4. it is about time that lawmakers realise that the people of this country are using and are now demanding the laws be changed to help the people with less cstly and less invasive modalities
    Tara C Sharma , M.D

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  5. The news that Texas and Nevada are contemplating this move towards integrated medicine is heartening to say the least. Being in Australia is frustrating because we can’t add our voice to your excellent action programs, but it gives us ammunition to act here and hope for changes in our system.

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