What Is ACAM?

A message from ACAM President Ted Rozema, MD

There is a lot going on in the world of Alternative Medicine. Some of it will be helpful to patients; others of it seem to be creating altercations between the "haves" and the "wannabes." ACAM is somewhat in the middle. We provide excellent medical education for our members, but are criticized by those elements controlling continuing medical education credits. Seems like it's ok to tell about a system of patient care that is not mainstream, but don't tell anyone about how to accomplish this care, or you won't get credit.

ACAM has been in this situation with the AMA. Recently, at a meeting in Chicago, (the home of the AMA) these matters were thoroughly discussed and our program directors, Dr.'s. Magaziner, Hoffman, and our Executive Director Dr. Ed Shaw and Attorney Greg Seeley demonstrated the excellence of our programs to the AMA, which incidentally was quite surprised, expecting that ACAM was a questionable organization at best. We do not know at the time of this writing what the result will be, but anticipate that intelligent persons at the AMA will see the quality of ACAM and continue the CME credits as they have since 1988.

On another note: all organizations do not have the internal workings of good committees. I wish to thank all the committee chairpersons who have been instrumental in assisting the directorship in maintaining the high quality of function that has made ACAM what it is today.

Leadership needs guidance and this is an excellent way to provide it. The call still goes out - if you have an interest in helping your organization through committee work, (a great way to begin to understand the workings of any organization), please contact Grace Claus at the ACAM office and let your interest be known.

On a national note: a very large research grant application has now been made to the National Heart Lung and Blood Institute at the NIH for a 2,200 patient, 100 site study called the Trial to Assess Chelation Therapy (TACT). This application must first be scored and then monies allocated for it. This is a time-consuming and politically charged issue. We have wonderful allies in the person of Representative Dan Burton (Republican - Indiana), along with his great staffer, Beth Clay. His Government Reform Committee has been overseeing chelation therapy to see it gets a fair shake in research even though there are other elements that do not want studies done. Any assistance you can give Congressman Burton will be assistance well spent to make the playing field equal. Our lobbyist, Bill Chatfield has really been diligent in his opening doors for us to actually get to those in power who are so well protected by their staff. This is not an easy task, but after 20+ years of respect in Washington, Bill is able to do this job with great skill and effectiveness.

Our next meeting in Dallas will only be successful if you are there! This is your meeting and your organization. Be there - and bring a colleague who needs education in our methods of healing. Bring your dentist, as the new mercury workshop is a place to understand the toxicity of mercury (even though it is still applauded by the American Dental Association as safe). Make your organization work for you. It is only as effective as you make it.


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