Changing the conversation about health

Dr Michael Dixon: “Long-term disease rates are soaring and the NHS can’t cope. We now need an integrated approach…”

In an interview filmed ahead of the European Congress for Integrative Medicine 2020, which takes place in London in September, College of Medicine Chair Dr Michael Dixon discusses the importance of integrative medicine, social prescribing, the challenge of gathering whole person evidence and recent research carried out by the WHO on taking an integrated approach.

“The healthcare system is under huge stress as long-term disease rates rise – integrative medicine can solve many of these problems…”

On the continuing stresses on the NHS, Dr Dixon says: “The current healthcare system is not containing the problems we have. If you look at long-term disease, which is 80 per cent of my work as a GP, rates of cancer, stress and anxiety, diabetes, heart disease and obesity are going up and up and up.

“There’s a limit to how much the healthcare system can afford and there’s a limit to the number of doctors and nurses out there – our healthcare system at the moment is under great strain and that’s why we need to have an integrated approach.”

Watch all of Dr Dixon’s interview below

For more information on the European Congress for Integrative Medicine 2020, visit

Dr Michael Dixon

Michael Dixon is a GP and National Clinical Lead for Social Prescription (NHS England), as well as being Chairman of the College of Medicine. Dr Dixon has been appointed as a government advisor on GP commissioning. Dr Dixon is a strong advocate of preventative medicine, healthy living and integrated care. In his Devon practice, patients are able to directly access a range of health check and self-help initiatives; emergency and maternity services; NHS community services including podiatry and physiotherapy and, for certain patients and certain conditions, complementary therapies. The philosophy is to help patients keep well instead of waiting until they are sick before helping them. Its success is demonstrated by the practice’s low referral rates and high scores on all performance indicators. Dr Dixon is also Visiting Professor at the University of Westminster; Honorary Senior Fellow in Public Policy at the Health Services Management Centre, University of Birmingham; and Honorary Senior Lecturer in Integrated Health at the Peninsula Medical School. He is also a Senior Associate at the King’s Fund where he is a member of the Steering Group of the Inquiry into quality of GP care.