This time of year often generates more stress as we try to keep up with practice responsibilities, preparing for the holidays, and setting goals for our new year. Every so often, we like to remind you – our members – to take a moment of simple reflection to take in how hard you’ve already worked. Pause and remember just how much you have already done for your patients and others across the year. We appreciate and celebrate you for the strides you take every day to afford patients the opportunity to benefit from root cause medicine!
Gratitude is one of those concepts that insulates us from life’s stressors. Speaking of gratitude, without you, NCIMS would not have its sense of purpose! We admire so much the fortitude required of any practitioner to make the transition into building a functional/integrative medicine practice. And, if you began years ago, not only did it require fortitude, it required inordinate amounts of bravery!
If you are newer to the integrative space, you may not know that North Carolina was an integral hot bed in the foundations of integrative practice in the US! NCIMS itself was born out of the hearts and minds of a small yet unwavering group of physicians who sought to insure the rights of doctors to practice integrative medicine.
As we all recognize in times of reflection and remembrance, we all had help along the way to becoming who we are. We take a moment of reflection and gratitude today to acknowledge the founding members of NCIMS:
Alexander Augoustides MD
James Biddle MD
Rashid Buttar DO
John Laird MD
John Pittman MD
Neal Speight MD
John Wilson MD
Learn More About Our History
We had an opportunity to sit down with a few of our founders to learn more about that time, and we are delighted to share one of those interviews here:
Sadly, one of these fearless founding physicians, Dr. Rashid Buttar, passed away in mid-2023. While controversial at times, it is without question that Dr. Buttar’s passion for physicians’ rights to practice helped get NCIMS off the ground in its early years. Along with his fellow founders, we appreciate all that they overcame to allow NCIMS members to practice more freely today.
Dr. Wilson submitted a brief testament of Dr. Buttar’s life and legacy for us to share:
Born in London to Pakistani parents, Buttar moved to the United States at age 9. He stood out as an achiever, earning Eagle Scout status at age 14. On a full academic ROTC scholarship, Buttar played football as a linebacker and defensive end for the Bears at Washington University in St. Louis.
After graduating with a double major in Biology and Theology at age 21, he attended medical school, receiving his medical degree at the University of Osteopathic Medicine and Health Sciences, College of Osteopathic Medicine and Surgery in Des Moines, Iowa. Dr. Buttar did a rotational internship with an emphasis in General Surgery in Houston, Texas and then later trained in General Surgery at Brooke Army Medical Center in San Antonio, Texas.
While serving in the US Army I Special Forces, Dr. Buttar also served as Brigade Surgeon for 2nd Infantry Division stationed in the Republic of South Korea, and later as Chief of the Department of Emergency Medicine at Moncrief Army Community Hospital at Ft. Jackson in Columbia, South Carolina while serving in the US Army.
Dr. Buttar was one of six founding members of the North Carolina Integrative Medical Society (NCIMS) in 2002 and served as its President for 8 years. He was an outspoken freedom fighter and didn’t avoid controversy. His early passing has left the medical community and many friends, followers and loved ones shocked and grieving. Dr. Rashid Buttar passed away on May 18th, 2023, at age 57 with his family at his home. His surviving family includes his three children Sara (30), Abie (24), and Rahan (18).
As we pause to remember all who have come before us, we invite you to reflect on who you are grateful for in 2023.
On behalf of NCIMS and its Board of Directors, thank you for being a part of our member community. May you know just how much you are respected, appreciated and admired.