The Academy Team

National Integration Academy Council (NIAC)

Establishing the National Integration Academy Council (NIAC) was a critical first step in building the AHRQ Academy to support the integration of behavioral health and primary care. The NIAC assists the project team in strategic planning, community building, national collaborations, product development, and learning. They conduct webinars and create resources and presentations to help bring the field together.

Noah Nesin, MD, FAAFP is the NIAC Chair, and Alexander Blount, EdD, is the NIAC Past Chair. Noah is Innovation Advisor at Penobscot Community Heath Care (PCHC). Alexander Blount is Professor Emeritus of Family Medicine at the University of Massachusetts Medical School where he founded the Center for Integrated Primary Care. He is also President of Integrated Primary Care, Inc. Frank Verloin deGruy III, M.D., M.S.F.M, Woodward-Chisholm Professor and Chair of the Department of Family Medicine at the University of Colorado School of Medicine, was Founding Chair of the NIAC from its beginning in 2011 until 2021. He continues to serve as a NIAC member.

The carefully chosen experts on the NIAC work as individuals or as a group to support the AHRQ Academy. Due to their knowledge of and shared commitment to behavioral health integration, the NIAC is now nationally recognized for its valuable contributions.

NIAC members have included clinicians and experts in the areas of:

  • Primary care,
  • Behavioral health,
  • Health care finance,
  • Medical education,
  • Patient advocacy,
  • Health Policy,
  • Health care for diverse populations,
  • Health care policy,
  • Addiction medicine, and
  • Technical assistance

Principal Investigator