Heather Tick, MD, MA

[course/subject] Integrative Pain Management 

Dr. Heather Tick has been an active member of the pain field for nearly thirty years. She co-founded and directed one of the first inter-disciplinary pain centers, in Toronto from 1991 to 2008. Here she worked with physicians from different specialties, working alongside naturopaths, psychologists, acupuncturists, massage therapists, and other integrative practitioners. She was subsequently recruited by the University of Arizona Health Plan to design and implement an integrative medicine pain clinic for Medicaid patients. This program successfully redirected patients from surgical, interventional and pharmacologic pain treatments to integrative nonpharmacologic strategies. The program was expanded to include the other insurance packages offered by the University of Arizona. In 2012 the University of Washington, Department of Anesthesiology & Pain Medicine recruited her. She is the first Gunn-Loke Endowed Professor of Integrative Pain Medicine at UW.

Dr. Tick has a strong history of interprofessional collaboration and education. As an educator she is working to raise patients’ and practitioners’ awareness of the evidence for nonpharmacologic care including a focus on health promotion and healthy lifestyle choices. As part of her UW responsibilities she teaches residents from many specialties teaches in the fellowship programs for pain medicine and sports medicine. She was a consultant for the Samueli Institute Chronic Pain Breakthrough Collaborative Program, which worked with military, veterans and civilian pain clinics to enhance their offerings.

She has written extensively on integrative pain medicine topics for academic publications and has written Holistic Pain Relief, for the lay public. She is heading the pain initiative for the Academic Consortium for Integrative Medicine and Health (ACIMH) and has recently completed completing a White Paper on nonpharmacologic pain care (www.nonpharmpaincare.org). She co-authored, with Lt Gen(ret) Eric Schoomaker, a chapter on integrative pain medicine for the textbook by Richard Carmona and Mark Liponis on Integrative Preventative Medicine (2018).

She brings to her work a balanced perspective as an educator, seasoned clinician and interprofessional collaborator.