IM4US 2021 Annual Conference: Decolonizing Medicine: Toward Equity and Inclusivity in Integrative Healthcare
What does it mean to decolonize medicine; and, how do we build more equitable models of integrative healthcare? Integrative Health has been critiqued as a movement emphasizing "elite medicine for the worried well... [and] pricey, non-essential healthcare practices for the 'overserved.' ''* Yet, many ‘integrative’ practices (e.g., yoga, mindfulness, acupuncture) have historical roots in communities of color, and—like air and water--belong in the commons, where value goes beyond price. Such practices also often originate in indigenous therapeutic paradigms that pre-date European colonization -- but continue to be devalued.
This year’s IM4US conference welcomes contributions on the following themes as well as other areas related to equity and inclusivity in integrative healthcare:
- Using anti-racist and/or re-indigenizing strategies to address social and structural determinants of health;
- Lifting up models of financially accessible, trauma-informed, culturally-safe, and culturally-responsive healthcare;
- Building trustworthy healthcare organizations;
- Transforming biomedical supremacy, environmental racism, and cultural misappropriation in healthcare;
- Expanding what ‘evidence’ means for marginalized communities and practices;
- Redefining professional expertise through dignified collaboration between diverse healthcare practitioners, patients, and communities; and
- Recognizing and honoring community-based health sovereignty.
Submissions will be housed within four conference tracks aligned with the IM4US mission: Outreach, Education, Research & Practice, and Advocacy.
*Chao MT, Adler SR. Integrative Medicine and the Imperative for Health Justice. J Altern Complement Med 2018 Feb;24(2):101–3.
Integrative Medicine for the Underserved (IM4US) is dedicated to equity, diversity, and inclusion in healthcare. Through outreach, education, research, and advocacy, they provide support to a community of diverse health practitioners working with underserved communities. IM4US is a collaborative, multidisciplinary group of people committed to affordable, accessible integrative healthcare for all. IM4US supports those dedicated to promoting health in underserved populations. They work to shift the current paradigm towards equity, wellness, prevention, patient empowerment, and self-care.