Today, I want to answer the question of how long should it take to integrate functional medicine. It’s a question I hear so much from busy practitioners who are considering going the functional medicine route.
There are really two areas to look at here. One area is the clinical side. The second is the business aspect of integrating functional medicine.
Here’s a little history first. When our team learned functional medicine, it was really learning functional medicine 5-10% at a time through weekend seminars which were 3-6 months apart. How long did it take us to integrate functional medicine? It took a long time. It took 3-4 years to understand all the fundamentals. That didn’t mean that we didn’t start using functional medicine right away, but there was a lot of difficulties, a lot of struggles and blood along the way because we didn’t have all the information to start. We had to gain the information we needed in bits and pieces over months and years as we went along.
We learned through an informational program. There are many similar programs out there that can take anywhere from 18 months to 4 years before you’re really ready to integrate functional medicine. It often takes that amount of time to gather all the information plus get the confidence to start with a patient and get results.
There is a difference between integrating functional medicine and integrating it and getting great outcomes. Big, big difference.