After moving to Albuquerque, N.M., in 1977, Dr. Sollins practiced emergency medicine for
nine years. During that time, he served the dual role of emergency physician and president
of the largest emergency room group in New Mexico. Between the years of 1977 and 1986, he
had direct responsibility for the development and operation of three emergency rooms and five
urgent care centers in Albuquerque. From 1986 through 1998, Dr. Sollins practiced general
internal medicine with New Mexico Medical Group, the largest private multi-specialty group in
Albuquerque, once again serving the dual role of physician and, from 1993-97, president of the
group. Under his leadership, New Mexico Medical Group began the transition from a "group
practice without walls" to more traditional multi-specialty group through the development of
the Jefferson Medical Campus, a 31,000 sq. ft. facility housing 15 physicians and full
laboratory and radiology services. From 1994 through 1997, Dr. Sollins also served as president
of The Physicians Healthcare Initiative, New Mexico’s largest independent physicians’
Bridges In Medicine began in 1996. At that time Dr. Sollins was enrolled in a program about
"creating possibilities." The underlying premise of this program stated: "The most important
determinant of our success, of how we function in the present, of who we are is not the past
but the future. When we are able to leave our past and stand in the future, the possibilities
for every part of our lives multiply exponentially."(2) Dr. Sollins found this concept
intriguing. His dream was to create a bridge for the integration of allopathic and
During the first few months of the development of Bridges In Medicine™, it was known in the
community as the "Magic of Medicine" group. Their first symposium was held on February 2, 1997.
Through the efforts of many wonderful healthcare practitioners from multiple disciplines, we
had a dialogue between nearly 60 providers from both the allopathic and non-allopathic
communities. The interest generated from this meeting was so overwhelming that a Steering
Committee was created to further elaborate how these communities could continue to work together.
It was at this time that Dr. Sollins suggested creating a team consisting of five
practitioners from various modalities to care for two of his patients with chronic problems. On June
22, 1997, a second symposium, now called "Bridges In Medicine," was held. The results of these two
eight-week treatment programs were astounding and are discussed below. When the practitioner community
present at the semiinar was able to see and hear, from patients themselves, the impact on their lives,
the "word" hit the street. Within a few weeks Bridges In Medicine was being asked to provide
medical care for various businesses in the Albuquerque area. Fortunately, during the previous year,
they had started already to develop a network while planning the original symposium. In August of 1997,
they offically formed "Bridges In Medicine Healthcare, Incorporated." Their present network consists
of approximately 30 practitioners representing 24 different conventional and complementary specialties.
Innovation: The Driving Force
The cornerstone of Bridges In Medicine, which makes us unique, is the intent of our T.E.A.M.
From its inception, the vision, goal or mission was to create a model for healthcare where the "whole"
patient was the focus of intention/attention. That attention whould be amplified by having a T.E.A.M. of
practitioners specifically create an environment of safey and comfort where patients could also participate,
proactively, in their own healing journey. You might say Bridges In Medicine has taken a
concept central to all major religions and belief system s and brought it into the 21st
It might be said that the process which is occuring in our T.E.A.M.s is high-tech prayer. Each member of
the T.E.A.M. in his or her own way is attuning to a higher level of consciousness, utilizing their
particular technical expertise, and then directly applying/focusing those intentions toward the
patient. Patients find themselves in a system of support and encouragement that allows them
to explore their own physical, emotional, mental and spiritual issues, while recognizing they also
have the safety net of high-tech Western medicine. The acronym T.E.A.M. - Trained Experts in the
Art of Medicine - is exactly what Bridges In Medicine represents.
Innovations in the Works
A top priority is the opportunity to create a link between Bridges In Medicine and the Electronic
Curbside Consult program developed by Dr. William Mitchell. This has absolutely incredible ramifications.
The ability to have a complementary medicine program connected via computer to the best of high-tech
Western medicine would truly create a cutting edge, patient-oriented, quality process. Dr. Sollins and
other staff physicians are unaware of any place in the country that presently employs this program design.
At Bridges In Medicine, we are beginning also to plan for the development of protocols for various disease
processes. especially in those areas in which traditional medicine finds itself at a loss:
fibromyalgia, low back pain, substance abuse, headache, chronic sinusitis, and general lifestyle changes.
Developing a methodolgy to collect outcome data from the various practitioners represents a
particular challege. Utilizing the Western medicine "SOAP" (Subjective Objective Assessment Plan) note
model will be a starting place, but the real challenge involves translation of those non-conventional
processes into the language that is understandable to practitioners across a wide spectrum of modalities.
At Bridges In Medicine, we have established a facility for both patients and practitioners, allowing them
to work together on a daily basis, and also to serve as a training site for students in the healing arts,
- physical therapy
- behavioral medicine
- health care administration students
Concepts that may have been considered radical just a few years ago have now moved from being visionary to
approaching the norm. The beauty of the process we call "life" is our ability to consciously move
into our own future. We at Bridges In Medicine feel it is our obligation and privilege to move
into the future and partners who have established themselves as living with a MISSION to SERVE.