Clinical Education: 0333 2414 289 or +441626 882166 if calling from abroad.
Organiser Address: Clinical Education, Nutrition House, Unit 24 Milber Trading Estate, Newton Abbot, Devon, TQ12 4SG UK.
Clinical Education: 0333 2414 289 or +441626 882166 if calling from abroad.
Organiser Address: Clinical Education, Nutrition House, Unit 24 Milber Trading Estate, Newton Abbot, Devon, TQ12 4SG UK.
Applying Functional Medicine in Clinical Practice™ (AFMCP™) synthesises the latest medical research with a model of care that integrates each patient’s individual history, genetics, and lifestyle factors. AFMCP™ equips clinicians to design effective, personalised treatments for each patient.
In a case-based setting, a team of experienced functional medicine clinicians teach participants how to use IFM™’s tools to improve outcomes for patients with chronic diseases.
IFM™’s Functional Medicine Certification Programme®, providing an outstanding overview of functional medicine as well as practical applications to begin practicing functional medicine in daily practice.
As a general rule, courses run approximately every 18 months. However, we rescheduled our 2020 course due to COVID-19 to 2021, so this means the next AFMCP-UK will likely not run again until 2023 at the earliest.
Statement of Need
The Institute for Functional Medicine™, in response to educational needs expressed by physicians and other healthcare practitioners, has created the Applying Functional Medicine in Clinical Practice™ (AFMCP)™ educational activity. AFMCP™ addresses practitioner needs by focusing on the development of knowledge and skill in healthcare delivery by integrating the science-based best practices of established and emerging care into an effective and cost-efficient approach to treatment that can be taught to practitioners and delivered to patients. AFMCP™ teaches the principles, processes, and clinical applications of functional medicine with the use of case studies that provide a model for personalised approaches to health care. Participating healthcare providers will learn how to apply functional medicine assessment tools to more fully evaluate patients’ health status as well as construct effective clinical interventions to enhance outcomes.
At the conclusion of Applying Functional Medicine in Clinical Practice™, participants should be able to:
1. Outline the scientific basis for functional medicine principles and fundamental clinical imbalances.
2. Apply the principles of functional medicine:
3. Apply key elements of the Functional Medicine Matrix in clinical practice:
4. Integrate appropriate assessment tools to diagnose, treat, and assess patient outcomes from a functional medicine perspective.
5. Design nutritional and lifestyle interventions to improve patient outcomes.
Yes. The AFMCP™ 2021 course in the UK will be run at the same level and high standards as the USA. The presentations will be adjusted to account for variations in the language, laboratory profiles and medications. The EU/UK has a different regulatory network relating to food supplements than the USA and the course will reflect that. In addition, the tests discussed will be ones that are obtainable in the UK through relevant laboratories or their distributors.
**Tentative – subject to adjustment**
Wednesday 6th October
Session: Introduction to Functional Medicine: Redefining Disease Applied Systems Medicine
1. Distinguish the key differences between conventional medicine and functional medicine.
2. Clarify how a systems based approach can effectively treat illness and promote wellness.
3. Understand broadly how to apply concepts of patient-centered care for patients with chronic disease.
Session: Mapping the Territory: Using the Functional Medicine Matrix Model
1. Understand and apply the functional medicine operating system and GOTOIT heuristic for patient management.
2. Apply knowledge of antecedents, triggers, and mediators while gathering the medical history.
3. Recognise the seven core clinical imbalances.
Session: DIGIN to Root Causes of Gut Dysfunction
1. Identify the key functional roles of the gastrointestinal tract, and recognise how impairments may lead to dysfunction.
2. Identify the role the gastrointestinal tract plays in many chronic diseases.
3. Use stool analysis as a foundational tool to help evaluate gastrointestinal function.
Session: Treatment of GI Dysfunction
1. Review and clarify the Functional Medicine Timeline, Matrix, and the concepts of Antecedents, Triggers, and Mediators.
2. Discuss the importance of understanding the patient’s individual story.
3. Identify key “Leverage Points” to utilise therapeutically with individual patients.
4. Define the components of the 5R framework (remove, replace, re-inoculate, repair, rebalance).
Thursday 7th October
Session: Treatment of GI Dysfunction
5. Select and interpret functional GI laboratory evaluation to help guide personalised implementations of the 5R approach in patients with gastrointestinal dysfunction.
6. Develop individual treatment protocols for patients with gastrointestinal dysfunction, using a framework of remove, replace, reinoculate, repair and rebalance.
7. Recognise how laboratory evaluation can help guide the implementation of the 5R approach.
Session: Immune Dysfunction and Inflammation: A Primary Mechanism of Illness
1. Recall the key physiologic steps by which the immune system defends the body and repairs it after injury and infection
2. Identify key factors that often underlie a dysfunctional inflammatory process and how this contributes to many chronic disorders.
3. Locate critical biochemical choice points in the inflammatory cascade that can be leveraged to dampen inflammation & restore immunologic balance.
4. Compose interventions with lifestyle, diet, & nutraceuticals to modify the inflammatory response in individual cases of chronic diseases.
Session: Food Allergies, Sensitivities, and Intolerances: Diagnosis and Treatment
1. Identify the differences between food allergy, food sensitivity, and food intolerance
2. Differentiate between IgG and IgE food testing, benefits and disadvantages.
3. Recognise the differences between coeliac disease, wheat allergy, and non-coeliac gluten sensitivity.
4. Outline a rationale for evaluating and testing for food reactions.
Session: Prescribing an Elimination Diet
1. Understand the fundamentals and variations of the elimination diet.
2. Recognise when and why to use an elimination diet.
3. Be able to implement an elimination diet.
4. Evaluate problems and implement practical solutions for patients on an elimination diet.
5. Systematically assess patient response to an elimination diet.
Session: Anthropometrics, Biomarkers, Clinical Assessment, and Diet Evaluation: The ABCDs of Nutritional Evaluation: Part 1
1. Introduce the strategy for beginning Nutrition Evaluation as an aid in the assessment of chronic disease.
2. Identify the 4 aspects of Nutrition Evaluation- Anthropometrics, Biomarkers and Functional Labs, Clinical Indicators, Diet and Lifestyle.
3. Introduce Case 2
4. Begin the Nutrition Evaluation. Anthropometrics and Body Composition Assessment.
Session: Shifting the Therapeutic Encounter
1. Identify the essential elements of the therapeutic encounter, which facilitate an “environment of insight” in a primary care setting.
2. Evaluate the science supporting the use of centering or ‘mindfulness’ techniques and their efficacy in promoting health.
3. Identify, and practice, “self gathering” techniques that help to enhance the therapeutic encounter for both practitioner and patient
4. Demonstrate how to utilise the patient’s story to create lasting changes in behaviour.
Friday 8th October
Session: Anthropometrics, Biomarkers, Clinical Assessment, and Diet Evaluation: The ABCDs of Nutritional Evaluation: Part 2
1. Introduce the clinical indicators of the nutrition evaluation- the nutrition physical exam
2. Highlight aspects of the hair, mouth, skin, nails, and peripheral nerve exam
3. Continue to highlight the application of the ABCD of nutrition Evaluation in Case 2
4. Summarise 4 functional tests that can be used in the clinic which can suggest nutrition inadequacy.
Session: Lowering the Toxic Body Burden Using Diet, Lifestyle, and Other Strategies
1. Define toxicant and recognize our increasing exposure to toxins, and evaluate the health consequences of a chronic, low-level toxic load.
2. Analyse the process of biotransformation (or detoxification) and how it may be modified.
3. Develop a strategy for assessing chronic toxicity.
4. Develop strategies to minimise toxic exposure, increase mobilisation, biotransformation, and excretion of toxins.
5. Implement a foundational detoxification program.
Session: Functional Approaches to Cardiometabolic Diseases
1. Asses patients for Cardiometabolic Syndrome
2. Populate key metabolic dysfunctions related to Cardiometabolic Syndrome onto the Functional Medicine matrix.
3. Apply key treatment strategies for Cardiometabolic Syndrome
Saturday 9th October
Session: Challenges in the Journey of Change
1. Compare the terms Change versus Transformation in the clinical context
2. Identify the challenges that both clinicians and patients face in the process of changing their behaviour.
3. Develop a strategy to foster therapeutic change in patients.
4. Analyse the role that spirituality plays in our patients and their relationship to chronic disease.
Session: Understanding the HPATG Axis: Biochemisry and Background
1. Describe and illustrate the complex role hormones play in overall physiology and how using the GOTOIT model can be used as a framework for evaluating and treating hormonal dysfunction
2. Describe how the HPATG axis can affect and be affected by all the clinical nodes in the matrix model
3. Introduce the steroidogenic pathway, and using that pathway as a guide, identify how psychosocial stress, inflammation, toxins, nutritional insufficiencies, dysglycemia and other ATMs may contribute to hormonal imbalances and symptoms.
4. Introduce the general treatment strategy for hormone dysfunction that focuses on: Production, Transport, Sensitivity and Detoxification (PTSD)
Session: Assessment and Treatment of Adrenal Dysfunction
1. Describe the functions of the adrenal cortex and adrenal medulla, including the roles they play in hormonal stress response physiology/the Hypothalamic-Pituitary-Adrenal Axis (HPA Axis)
2. Explain the relationships between stress response, homeostasis, allostasis, and allostatic load.
3. Review the most important antecedents, triggers and mediators of HPA Axis dysfunction.
4. Be familiar with important signs, symptoms and patterns in cortisol/DHEA adrenal response, and be able to choose the most useful laboratory tools to accurately assess patients with suspected HPA Axis dysfunction.
5. Develop a plan for prescribing nutraceuticals, diet, and lifestyle interventions to modulate and balance the overall production, transport, sensitivity and detoxification in the HPA axis.
Session: Assessment and Treatment of Thyroid Dysfunction
1. Analyse underlying causes for the high incidence of hypothyroid dysfunction in the general population.
2. Be familiar with important signs, symptoms and conditions and be able to choose the most useful laboratory tools to accurately assess individuals with suboptimal thyroid function.
3. Evaluate the controversy regarding TSH assessment and subclinical hypothyroidism, and recognise how to use and interpret this test as part of a broader assessment of thyroid dysfunction.
4. Develop a plan for prescribing nutraceuticals, diet and lifestyle interventions to modulate and balance the overall production, transport and sensitivity and detoxification of thyroid hormones.
Session: Testosterone Deficiency in Men
1. Describe testosterone deficiency, its prevalence in the male population, and relationship to aging.
2. List aetiologies of diminished testosterone levels, and physiological impact of low testosterone levels.
3. Identify signs, symptoms and conditions associated with low testosterone and choose the most useful laboratory tools to assess men with low testosterone.
4. Develop a plan for prescribing nutraceuticals, diet and lifestyle interventions to enhance production, transport, sensitivity and detoxification of testosterone.
Sunday 10th October
Session: Modulating a Woman’s Hormones
1. Associate common signs and symptoms of hormonal imbalance in women with the common aetiologies and ATMs of hormonal imbalance, including inflammation, impaired detoxification, and dysglycaemia.
2. Select appropriate laboratory tests and other assessments to investigate the degree and causes of hormonal imbalances in women.
3. Design personalised interventions using diet, lifestyle and nutraceutical interventions to reduce symptoms and improve clinical outcomes for women with hormonal imbalances.
4. Apply personalised diet and lifestyle treatment approaches for women with hormonal imbalances such as oestrogen dominance and luteal phase dysfunction
Session: Mitochondrial and Energy Dynamics
1. Recall mitochondrial structure, function, and metabolism
2. Identity the mechanisms of how dietary factors and toxins can contribute to mitochondrial dysfunction.
3. Recognise how Reactive Oxygen Species (ROS) can affect mitochondrial function and how antioxidants can be used to mitigate these effects
4. Connect certain signs, symptoms, and disease presentations with mitochondrial dysfunction
5. Compose appropriate mitochondrial support treatment plans using diet, nutrients, and phytochemicals.
Session: Clinical Integration of Functional Nutrition and Lifestyle Change
1. Develop skills in working up a patient using the functional medicine paradigm.
2. Integrate concepts from the functional medicine matrix model that help in the recognition of clinical patterns.
3. Determine which functional nutrition dietary intervention would be most appropriate for your patient.
Session: Clinical Integration and the Functional Medicine Matrix
1. Utilise IFM™’s clinical tools that have been introduced at AFMCP™.
2. Begin to effectively apply IFM™’s GOTOIT methodology to patient care.
3. Apply an optimal sequence of clinical interventions suited for clinicians new to functional medicine
Session: Insight, Intuition, and the Therapeutic Partnership
1. Identify common patient and practitioner pathways and tools for the development of an effective healing environment in a healthcare practice.
2. Utilise the patient’s story to create changes in behaviour in a primary care setting.
3. Identify the essential elements of the therapeutic encounter, which facilitate an “environment of insight” and transformational changes in a primary care setting.
Functional medicine has long encouraged an integrative approach to clinical education. The AFMCP™ course is for healthcare practitioners who are already qualified in a core discipline and applicants/attendees must be a graduate of an accredited medical, osteopathic, chiropractic, naturopathic, homeopathic, dietetics, acupuncture, pharmacy, physiotherapy or nutritional therapy programme. If you have any doubts you may contact Claire Gardin to discuss your case on 0333 2414 289. Previous training in functional medicine is desirable but not essential; a good understanding of the role nutrition plays in health is also helpful.
Meeting the minimum eligibility requirements for the AFMCP™ course does not guarantee acceptance into IFM™’s Certification Program. Healthcare practitioners who would like to continue their Functional Medicine education with IFM™ and seek certification will need to apply directly to IFM™ to have their eligibility determined. You can find their eligibility requirements here. Every application is evaluated on educational background, program degree, regulatory status, and clinical experience.
As part of the registration process you will be sent a short introductory text of functional medicine used to describe the principles and practices of functional medicine. It is highly recommended that this is read ahead of attending the AFMCP™-UK.
Ultimately the decision to attend is yours alone. Many people have taken this course more than once and have attended annual symposia and advanced functional medicine modules as they find every occasion adds value to their understanding and experiences – you must decide what is right for you and your clinical expectations.
It will inevitably encompass information you already know – that is the point of postgraduate education – the unique aspects of the course relate not simply to the up-to-date content but also to the integration of the teaching of the intense 5-day planning, the case histories, faculty questions and sharing the experience with your colleagues from around Europe and other countries.
No – The AFMCP™-UK attendees will be referred to as ‘Graduates of the AFMCP™-UK course’ and may refer to this in their relevant literature but it will not confer additional designatory letters – it is a post-graduate educational training programme, not a fully certificated course. IFM™ does offer a certification course in functional medicine, and the AFMCP™ course constitutes a significant part of that training. You may carry your attendance on the AFMCP™- UK course over to the Certification Programme.
The Functional Medicine Certification Programme™ is designed to provide comprehensive clinical training for assessment, treatment, prevention, and management of patients with complex, chronic disease. The components of the course include:
The AFMCP™-UK course will count towards the Certification Programme in the same way that it does if training in the USA. More information on the Certification Programme may be found on IFM’s website.
IFM™ is an accredited medical education provider and is working with Clinical Education and the relevant certifying bodies in the UK to ensure credits are applied equivalent to those obtained in the USA. For Medical practitioners, the application of the self-certification model as promoted by the Academy of Medical Royal Colleges is recommended. We suggest that you visit our CPD page for more detail.
You will have copies of all the slides in a PDF format, electronic copies of the pre-reading document used for the AFMCP™-UK course and 3 months online access to all of the recommended intake forms, food options, clinical pearls and basic business planning ideas. IFM™ retains copyright over the slides, and therefore these are for personal use, and may not be re-purposed for commercial activities.
There are a number of books to consider but two we recommend are Biochemical Imbalances In Disease and Laboratory Evaluations for Integrative and Functional Medicine 2nd ed. If you are interested in an in-depth reading about the role that foods and food substrates have on the immune system consider Dietary Components And Immune Function.
The intake is limited to approximately 320 practitioners; we have had a great deal of interest in the course, but are unsure at this stage how many participants will actually attend. We hope to fill the places and look forward to all attendees passing their experiences on to their colleagues.
The AFMCP™-UK is a stand-alone postgraduate 5-day training course which qualifies for CPD credits. At the end of the course you will be awarded a certificate of attendance and completion and you will be designated a ‘Graduate of the AFMCP™-UK course.’ This does not make you a ‘Certificated Practitioner of Functional Medicine’ (this requires additional training and an exam), rather it makes you a practitioner of your recognised discipline, say Nutritional Therapy, who has now undertaken advanced training in applying the principles of functional medicine to that core discipline/s.
AFMCP™-UK is designed as a postgraduate programme aimed at MSc level education and above and is ideally suited to attendees with a first degree in a principal medical discipline or allied health care therapy with at least three years of undergraduate training. Aspects of the course will naturally be familiar and some areas may be seen as a refresher by some attendees. The focus is not solely on the intake of new information but rather on the cohesive use of the information so that the practitioner and patient are able to share the journey.
The AFMCP™-UK course is taught in English, and there are no onsite translation facilities available. Please attend only if you are competent at understanding a high level of the English Language.
IFM™ operates a web-based support structure that will permit you access to the mentors and colleagues involved in AFMCP™-UK to assist you in the application of your new or enhanced skills and ensure you feel comfortable as you take on new challenges. Clinical Education also lead a dedicated Facebook Group to faciliate peer-to-peer support and questions.
The AFMCP™-UK course is not a business model designed to develop the financial aspects of your practice, it is a professional health care provider training programme. Practitioners who complete the training are listed on the ‘Find a Functional Medicine Practitioner’ page of the Institute for Functional Medicine™’s web site (subject to you maintaining membership of IFM™)and you may state that you are a graduate of the AFMCP™-UK training in your clinic literature. Those who attend who are not registered medical doctors must ensure that their web site and other marketing materials do not infer or imply that completing this course confers a ‘medical qualification’ upon them to avoid issues with regulatory authorities and to fairly reflect the new skills set.
Increased clinical success is generally regarded as the hallmark of a practitioner who has combined clinical skills with marketing and exposure strategies that support and reinforce the care and practice they have to offer. A short overview of how to manage patients in a practice that employs the Functional Medicine Matrix will be presented in the evening by experienced practitioners from the UK and the USA.
Other documents and strategies that have been clinically refined and developed over many years will be made available to you in the tool kit you will be provided with. These are adapted for the UK and EU market (they are in English only).
AFMCP™-UK is a 5-day postgraduate medical education course; appropriate CPD credits are being applied for to match those issued to IFM through the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education in the USA. The NHS confers no specific recognition of this course, but clinical employees of the NHS and those operating in private practice may attach the relevant self accredited CPD credits to their annual requirement for CPD to maintain their licence to practice or their professional membership.
We have arranged a special room rates at the Park Plaza Riverbank. Twin bedded rooms are available at the same rate for practitioners wishing to share with a colleague and keep accommodation costs to a minimum. The details of these preferential rates will be given to you at the time of booking.
No – please find your own preferred accommodation if the venue hotel is unsuitable.
Yes. In order to achieve your AFMCP™-UK graduation certificate of attendance all 5 days must be completed and all attendees must attend all of the individual lectures.
No. The AFMCP™-UK course in an integrated learning programme and is not designed for a ‘cherry picking’ educational exercise. If having paid for the full course circumstances mean you have to miss one or more days, the CPD credits will be altered, accordingly, and tapes of the lectures will be provided for review, but no CPD allowance.
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