Frederick O. Foote, MD, CAPT, MC, USN (Ret.)


Home Institution: The Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences (Health Services Administration), Bethesda, MD

Field: Neurology

Current Positions:

  • »
    Adjunct Assistant Professor, The Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences
  • »
    Project Officer, The Epidaurus Project

How do we spread the model of holistic care established at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center to other health care facilities, both civilian and military?

Scholar Project

The Epidaurus Project: Writing Its History for the Future

Since 2001, Dr. Foote has played a leading role in an initiative to introduce an unprecedented level of holistic care and assessment in the Military Health System. This effort, known as the Epidaurus Project, aims to enhance the health of service members and veterans through:

Family-centered approaches

Multi-disciplinary care integration

Tools and practices that support wellness, including nutrition, exercise, mind-body medicine, complementary/alternative medicine, healing arts, and spirituality

Evidence-based design of healing environments

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The Epidaurus Project—named for a celebrated sanctuary of healing in ancient Greece—scored a major victory with the creation of the new Walter Reed National Military Medical Center (WRNMMC) in Bethesda, MD, and its regional integrated delivery system of hospitals and clinics. All incorporate the key elements of holistic care.

Dr. Foote’s work as an Institute Scholar is to produce a series of publications documenting and analyzing this historic development at one of the world’s most prestigious and influential healthcare institutions. In journal articles, Dr. Foote is detailing strengths, weaknesses, and opportunities for improvement, and discussing issues that are central to the further evolution of holistic care.

Dr. Foote’s ultimate goal is to publish a book that will, in his words, “serve both as a manual for medical students constructing their general concepts of medicine and as a resource for residents in complementary and integrative medicine.”



Frederick O. Foote, MD, a retired U.S. Navy physician, leads the Epidaurus Project, which aims to integrate whole-person care in hospitals and clinics throughout the U.S. Military Health System.

A practicing neurologist for 20 years, Dr. Foote served at the National Naval Medical Center (NNMC) in Bethesda, MD, in numerous positions, including chairman of the NNMC Ethics Committee and team leader of the Neurosciences Service Line. As head of special projects for the Neuro-musculskeletal Service Line, he was responsible for the inception, funding acquisition, and development of clinical programs, including the Vietnam Head Injury Study, Conemaugh/Jackson Neurosciences Research Program, NNMC Multidisciplinary Sleep Center, NNMC Spine Center, NNMC Centers of Excellence for Cranial-Spinal Surgery and Total Joint Replacement, and the NIH/NNMC Center for Musculoskeletal Research.

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Dr. Foote served in Operation Iraqi Freedom as a staff neurologist and assistant medical department head on the USNS COMFORT, a seagoing medical treatment facility. He was then deployed to West Africa, where he developed programs for improving health care at sea, including the IMPACT at Sea Program for medical quality management; the IWO Successful Sailors Program; and initiatives in space redesign, infection control, and mass casualty care.

In 2006, he was appointed project officer of the Epidaurus Project. In that role, he serves as a subject matter expert in advanced health facilities design, holistic medicine, use of the arts in health care, and patient/family centered care. He was assigned as an advisor to design teams for Walter Reed National Military Medical Center (WRNMMC), Fort Belvoir Community Hospital, The National Intrepid Center of Excellence for Psychological Health and Traumatic Brain Injury (NICoE), and the Medical Home and Patient/Family Centered Care initiatives at NNMC.

Dr. Foote has been honored by the Navy with two Meritorious Service Medals, four Commendation Medals, a Meritorious Unit Commendation, a Good Conduct Medal, a Humanitarian Service Medal, and a National Defense Medal.

He is an adjunct assistant professor at The Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences, Health Services Administration. His forthcoming book of poetry, to be published by Grayson Books, was inspired by his experiences in Afghanistan treating the wounded of the Iraq/Afghanistan Wars.



Education & Training

Residency, neurology, Yale University School of Medicine

Internship, University of Tennessee Hospital

MD, Georgetown University School of Medicine

MS, pharmacology, Georgetown University School of Medicine

BA, general studies in the humanities, University of Chicago


Selected Honors

Two Navy Meritorious Service Medals

Four Navy Commendation Medals

Navy Meritorious Unit Commendation

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Navy Good Conduct Medal

Navy Humanitarian Service Medal

National Defense Medal

Sandoz Award for Pharmacology Research


Selected Publications

Advanced Metrics for Assessing Holistic Care: The "Epidaurus 2" Project.
Global Advances in Health and Medicine, February 2018

Holistic Care in the US Military I-The Epidaurus Project: An Initiative in Holistic Medicine for the Military Health System, 2001-2012
Global Advances in Health and Medicine, May 2012

The Epidaurus Project: Holism in Department of Defense Health Facilities.
Military Medicine, January 2012

Holism at the National Intrepid Center of Excellence (NICoE).
Explore, September 2012

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Use Data to Improve Medical Care at Sea.
U.S. Naval Institute Proceedings, February 2011

A Tuberculosis Event on a Navy Assault Ship.
Military Medicine, December 2006

COMFORT’s Casualty Care System Works!
U.S. Naval Institute Proceedings, February 2006

See research papers on PubMed