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Speaker Spotlights

Physician heal thyself – it’s simple!


There’s an expression that medical professionals can probably benefit from, which is: “a rising tide lifts all boats.” Medical professionals, and doctors in particular, have a reputation for not always following their own best practices for maintaining optimum health.


Dr. Ben Brown is hoping to change that with his presentation, “Physician and Patient Tools for Wellness - Top 10 Tools to Heal Ourselves and Why
this Helps Heal the World”. 

“My passion is helping medical folks stay well and live the life they were born to live,” Dr. Brown said. He is also passionate about integrative medicine, helping co-found a group that helps bring integrative
medicine to the underserved.


Dr. Brown’s main topics include: One thing Any Provider Who Want Their Patients to Change Can Do. How to make progress on what is most important to you. Hint, it is easier than you think. How to make
friendships really count. Keeping change simple and Why it works! Unique Gifts of Being a Healer.


Along with many other hats, Dr. Brown serves as Associate Clinical Professor, University of California San Francisco and Stanford University.


Ben Brown, MD

Physician and Patient Tools for Wellness

Nonviolent communication key in healthcare relationships

Communication is important in most industries but in healthcare it can sometimes literally be a matter of life and death.


For the Integrative Medicine Symposium, Oren Jay Sofer will address one
aspect of this very important component of healthcare.


“I plan to explore how improving interpersonal communication can support healthier clinician-patient relationships, better health outcomes, as well as clinician wellness, resilience and satisfaction,” Sofer said.


What was once thought of as “bedside manner,” is having a resurgence, with more and more healthcare systems seeing the value and benefit of treating individuals rather than cases. “I’ll explore the multifaceted role of the clinician as healer, mentor and friend, and how empathy and listening enhances and supports each role,” Sofer added.


But communication isn’t just talking. Sofer will also discuss “how precision listening can support one’s work. I’ll touch on the role of
presence and intention in building relationship and communicating, and how to effectively deescalate tense situations whether it’s with a patient, colleague or staff member,” Sofer added.

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Oren Jay Sofer

Nonviolent Communication for Healthcare Providers

SanArte: It takes a village

Most people have probably heard, at some point or another, the expression, “the whole is greater than the sum of its parts.”


Organizers of SanArte Healing and Cultura clinic in San Antonio, Texas set out to address a common theme in city council meetings across the country, “how do communities get rid of undesired conditions,
like crime, violence, and drug use?”


Dr. Vanessa Quezada, one of the co-founders of SanArte, and a presenter at Touro University’s Integrative Medicine Symposium on January 10, said it starts with addressing the underlying cause of these problems. The potential solution is already here- it involves the skills and backgrounds of numerous individuals throughout the community all focused on healing and wellness – complementary in all forms.

“(SanArte) programming is a response from people with skills spanning different sectors such as food, native medicine, social justice, education, carpentry and the medical industrial complex to form a model that activates people’s brain stems to actively connect with their own healing process in a culturally relevant way,” Dr. Quezada said. 

Re~indigenizing Medicine: Healing in Community


Much of the work at SanArte includes thoughtful ways to support traditionally disenfranchised groups, including indigenous peoples, as well as people from BIPOC and LGBTQIA communities.  Programs offered at SanArte include everything from native sound healing, indigenous land stewardship, design, carpentry, mutually generative support groups and other culturally grounded transformational
wellness community building. 


“We are creating an environment so that people can walk out of their houses and experience vicarious healing, instead of violence,” Dr. Quezada said.

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Dr. Vanessa Quezada

Re~indigenizing Medicine:

Healing in Community

Herbal Remedies for a Healthy Immune System

During the past year, people across the planet have been seeking ways to stay healthy, prevent illness, and recuperate quickly. In the absence of effective vaccines or over the counter remedies for novel infections,
many have been seeking natural remedies to boost the immune system and ease mild viral symptoms.


Ingrid Bauer’s session will examine “the traditional use and current science on the top dozen botanicals found on the marketplace for optimizing immune system health, including applications, contraindications and herb-drug interactions.” Given the lack of scientific research on botanicals for preventing and treating COVID-19 infection, Dr. Bauer will review the existing data on herbs with longstanding traditional use for supporting the immune system and the respiratory tract.


Remedies from non-Western sources can often meet resistance from Western medical practitioners, but Bauer’s presentation is rooted in evidence-based resources aimed at safety and efficacy. She hopes her
presentation will offer tools for healthcare practitioners to support patients with mild viral illnesses especially during the cold & flu season.


Plant and herb remedies can often be viewed as having a foundations pre-dating medical science, but Bauer demonstrates how this topic is relevant today. “While inflammation and immunity have been
longstanding challenges in the practice of medicine, the past year has raised the specter of a global pandemic and how individuals, communities, and healthcare systems can reduce the rate of infection and complications,” Bauer said.

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Dr. Ingrid Bauer, MD

Inflammation and Herbs for Immune Health 

Kate Bentley: Treat the patient, not the disease

Through the lens of Western science, Western medicine is often viewed as biological or chemical in its focus, while Eastern medicine practices can often be seen as having a more mystical quality to them.

As integrative medicine concerns itself with the total health picture of patients, Ayurveda, with its roots in India, is a perfect match for the Integrative Medicine Symposium.


Ayurvedic medicine specialist Kate Bentley’s presentation during the symposium with give an overview of the history and philosophy of the practice, include the focus on mind, body and spirit.

Bentley’s presentation will help demonstrate how Ayurveda approaches a common malady like inflammation, looking at some of the root causes of physiological imbalance, disrupted metabolic function and the disease process that ensues.


“The good physician treats the disease a great physician treats the patient,” as she quotes, Sir William Osler, founder of Johns Hopkins.


Bentley will cover how Ayuvedra addresses this concept fully, examining, the laws of nature, macrocosm/microcosm, circadian rhythms, mind body spirit not separate, person not the pathology, emphasis on prevention, but also on assessment and treatment, purification and rejuvenation.

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Kate Bentley, MA

A Whole Systems Approach to Inflammation and Digestive Health

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