Weekly Address from Mary Faria: Week 11

AOMA weekly updates (week of 6/29/20)


1. AOMA’s desire to combat racism –

· A meeting is planned this week with one of the academic leaders of the National University of Natural Medicine to learn and determine how we might collaborate with the work they do around racial disparity, in particular a course they teach in race and disparities in health care. This would be a good starting point for similar coursework and training at AOMA.

· We have reached out to two groups we hope to build a collaborative partnership with, one is a not-for-profit committed to health diversity, equity and inclusion, and making Complementary and Integrative Health interventions accessible for all, they do a great deal of research. The other is a not-for-profit that supports medical students of color in a variety of ways. One of our AOMA students is active in the group and we want to support that student’s efforts and determine how we can best support the organization.

· An article provided by Dr. Voyles regarding NADA’s history in underserved communities of color was published on our blog.

· Our Admission Director Brian Becker has contacted Huston-Tillotson College to organize a recruitment event. He continues to establish recruitment events with other historically black universities and colleges


2. Plans and issues related to COVID-19 crisis including clinic and campus re-openings

· Final plans for Summer 2020 term student clinics should be published soon. Determining how many students and supervisors are wanting to work in the clinics this Summer has been the challenge. As the COVID cases rise in Austin/Travis county some who had planned to join clinics in person have changed their minds. We did though pilot a means of pairing a supervisor on site with one working virtually. The pilot worked well, so this may be an option. We appreciate everyone’s patience as we work through an environment that is in constant change right now.

3. Key operational issues or updates

· Anyone coming onto campus is asked to follow all precautions including masking and practicing physical distancing. When campus reopens, screening will be like that used with patients.

· There have been concerns raised by students regarding how on-line classes are being conducted by some faculty members. These are all being addressed, thank you for bringing these forward.

4. Important announcements or answers to questions sent in my students, faculty or staff

· Please join me in congratulating Dr. Claudia Voyles on her recent publication in the Journal of Addiction Science. Here is a link to the article abstract  Asking NADA: A Needs Assessment for Training Renewal - Journal of Addiction Science

Take care, stay safe and stay healthy (mind, body and spirit).

With Love and Peace,

Mary