The North American Institute of Medical Herbalism is part of a community of schools which are informally affiliated. Each of these autonomous institutions has as its foundation the same Vitalist approach to healing. In addition there is substantial overlap of courses, curriculum, and key faculty between them.
The Acorn School of Herbal Medicine, in Nevada City, California, offers the audio courses from the NAIMH as its core curriculum, but supplements the Foundations of Western Herbalism certificate course with more than 300 additional hours of on-site classroom, lab, and field training, using a "flipped classroom" model of education. In this model, students listen to the core lectures on their own time before classes, and then applies the material in projects or case studies in class, and can receive supplemental information in person. The Acorn school offers hands-on plant identification and medicine-making classes not possible through the NAIMH. This school also offers a monthly community clinic day, and students are engaged in clinical herbalism from the very first program. Graduates of the Acorn Footprints program receive dual certification from the Acorn School and the NAIMH.
The Southern Institute of Medical Herbalism offers internet-based education in medical herbalism throughout the world. (One student lives at an Arctic outpost by the North Pole). The SIMH, based in Christchurch, New Zealand, incorporates all the audio courses of the NAIMH into its curriculum, and supplements them substantially with extensive video training and internet mentoring by some of the leading professional medical herbalists in New Zealand. The first SIMH certificate program is an enhanced version of the NAIMH Foundations in Western Herbalism Program. This is followed by a Diploma Program with extensive training in professional level clinical skills.
The Colorado School of Clinical Herbalism in Boulder, CO offers on-site beginning, advanced, and clinical training, culminating in an 8-month residency in a public clinic. Certification can be earned in any combination of Clinical Herbalism, Clinical Nutrition, Flower Essences and Field Botany. This school was originally founded as the NAIMH in the year 2003. It was sold, along with its curriculum, to become the CSCH in 2012. The curriculum has developed and evolved over time, and today this is arguably the premier school for hands-on supervised clinical training in integrated herbalism and nutrition in North America. More than 300 clinical herbalists have graduated from the original NAIMH and the current CSCH combined, with a continuity of vitalist philosophy, curriculum, faculty, and training methods. In addition to substantial overlap in curriculum content, the NAIMH and the CSCH share the same core clinical faculty.
The Vital Ways school of Holistic Herbalism, like each of these schools, incorporates a solid foundation in the Vitalist approach to healing, clinical nutrition, and mind-body medicine. The school has a one-weekend-a-month program of classroom, lab, and field classes and four different program at different levels of training. NAIMH director Paul Bargner is part of the core faculty at the school, and mentors students directly during their clinical training.