The American College of Lifestyle Medicine (ACLM) has announced its Health Systems Council (HSC), a new group to support the pioneering trend of implementing lifestyle medicine into some of the largest and most innovative health organizations in the U.S. The new council has a founding membership of 19 systems employing more than 650k employees serving millions of patients in 28 states. It is guided by an advisory board chaired by Michael P. O’Donnell, PhD, CEO and Founder, Art and Science of Health Promotion Institute, with six other experts who are accomplished pioneers in the field of lifestyle medicine.
Lifestyle Medicine is the use of evidence-based lifestyle therapeutic interventions—including a whole-food, plant-predominant eating pattern, regular physical activity, restorative sleep, stress management, avoidance of risky substances, and positive social connection—as a primary modality, delivered by clinicians trained and certified in this specialty, to prevent, treat and often reverse chronic disease. Leading health systems have begun deploying lifestyle medicine centers, integrating lifestyle medicine into employee wellness and expanding research into the therapeutic impacts of lifestyle medicine. U.S. health systems, defined in this case, include at least one hospital and at least one group of physicians providing comprehensive care, and who are connected with each other and with the hospital through common ownership or joint management.
The council is designed to support a collaborative community of health systems leading the transition to value-based care through integration of lifestyle medicine, synonymous with value-based care. While lifestyle medicine is not new, large-scale implementation of these evidence-based modalities into health systems is one of the greatest pioneering initiatives in the health care industry today, and presents a number of learning opportunities and challenges. The council will provide a platform for health systems to exchange state-of-the-art practices and resources, identify pragmatic solutions to common barriers, and accelerate the integration and implementation of lifestyle medicine therapeutic modalities within their organizations and their communities.
“This is pioneering work with systems who have identified that providing care through a lifestyle medicine lens and through lifestyle medicine programs is an avenue to successfully make a transition to value-based care,” said ACLM President Cate Collings, MD, MS, FACC, DipABLM. “These organizations are leading edge in this recognition and ACLM and patients are equally fortunate to move forward together in this direction. I congratulate our partners in their dedication to the best patient care.”
For more information, visit www.lifestylemedicine.org.