Helping Patients and Providers


Learn how to work in a medical setting. Fit seamlessly into a practice. Coach medical patients to better health.

Study Online

Flexible remote learning on your own time and the device of your choosing. 

Lifetime Access

We stay up to date on the latest in healthcare and medicine, so you can too.

Community Support

When you enroll in any Primal Health Coach Institute Course, you join a community of like-minded health and fitness professionals.

What You'll Receive

This course prepares you for a successful career as a health coach in an established medical practice by addressing the core competencies deemed necessary for all healthcare providers by the Institute of Medicine. You’ll graduate ready to approach the practice of your choice with confidence, armed with the tools you need to accept referrals, plan evidence-based programs, coach patient-clients, evaluate your progress, and become an indispensable part of the medical patient care team.
  • Online course made up of 6 written chapters
  • Each chapter includes bite-sized learning objectives, an overview, definition of terms, relevant lessons, and various practical resources to put learning into action.
  • A job-search roadmap 
  • We prepare you with sample telephone and email scripts, a practice assessment, a CV template, and supportive materials to help you land your dream job in a medical practice.
  • Specialized program planning and coaching for medical patients
  • This resource-rich toolkit includes a goal-setting template, an evidence-based health coaching blueprint, a program evaluation checklist, and more.
  • Scope of practice guidance
  • We'll prepare you with medico-legal basics to launch your career in healthcare, including instruction on appropriate language and conduct for interactions with providers and patients, and help you clearly define your scope of practice.
  • Access to a private Primal Health Coach Institute Facebook community
  • Network and stay motivated with the Primal Health Coach Institute team and your peers in our private Facebook community.






What You'll Learn

Working with patients diagnosed with an illness or chronic disease is different from working with clients who’ve come to you to improve overall wellness. This course will teach you how to work within the healthcare system and with healthcare colleagues, and how to coach individual patient-clients. We cover medical ethics and professional conduct, and give you the tools you need to secure a position at a medical practice that’s a great fit for your career goals.
  • An overview of the U.S. healthcare system and how health coaches are key to reform
  • The many and varied types of patients you will be working with, and the special skills and qualities you bring to the table
  • Professional and medical ethics and conduct, as well as our own code of ethics for our coaches
  • Coaching techniques and tactics sanctioned by mainstream medicine
  • How to design your own evidence-based patient program
  • A blueprint for evaluating health coaching programs with individual patients
  • The basics of the electronic health record (EHR) and U.S. protection of patient information (HIPAA) regulations
  • What to expect when job-hunting for clinical health coaching positions, plus insider tips for getting your foot in the door

Course Outline


Welcome from Judith Boyce MD

Meet Your Faculty and Staff

Course Structure

Medical Practices NEED Health Coaches

Learning Outcomes of This Course

Healthcare Core Competencies

Language and Identifiers

Geography and Portability: What if You Do Not Live or Work in the United States?


Legal & Support

Important: Legal Matters

Disclaimer and Copyright Notice


Bonus Educational Material


Health Coaching in Medical Practices Part 1 - Interview with Instructor Dr. Boyce

Health Coaching in Medical Practices Part 2 - Interview with Instructor Dr. Boyce

Integrating Health Coaching in Medical Practices - Interview with Instructor Dr. Boyce

Chapter 1: The Health Care System, and Why Medical Practices Need Health Coaches

Chapter Overview

Quick Facts

Definition of Terms

Overview of the U.S. Healthcare System

Introduction to Care Coordination

New Models of Care

Types of Community Medical Practices

Why Medical Practices Need Health Coaches

Chapter Summary and References

Chapter 1 Exam

Chapter 2: Understanding and Communicating with Patients

Chapter Overview

Quick Facts

Definition of Terms

Your New Client: The Medical Patient

Social, Economic, and Cultural Factors that Influence Health

A Primer on Chronic Disease

The Evolution of Patient-centered Care

Special Skills and Qualities That You Bring To The Table

Chapter Summary and References

Chapter 2 Exam

Chapter 3: Ethics, Professionalism, and Teamwork in Healthcare Settings

Chapter Overview

Quick Facts

Definition of Terms

Ethics for Health Coaches in Healthcare Settings

Professionalism in the Healthcare Setting

Teams and Teamwork

Chapter Summary and References

Chapter 3 Exam

Chapter 4: Health Coaching and Program Planning for the Medical Patient

Chapter Overview

Quick Facts

Definition of Terms

Coaching Patients Versus Self-Referring Clients: Similarities and Differences

Evidence-based Program Planning for Patients in Medical Practices

Accessing and Optimizing Community Support for Vulnerable Patients

Chapter Summary and References

Chapter 4 Exam

Chapter 5: Tracking Patient Progress and Evaluating Coaching Programs: Toward Quality Improvement

Chapter Overview

Quick Facts

Definition of Terms

What Is Quality Improvement (QI)?

Tracking and Evaluating Your Health Coaching Programs

How to Document and Protect Patient Information

Chapter Summary and References

Chapter 5  Exam

Chapter 6: Putting It All Together: A Vision, A Roadmap, and Resources

Chapter Overview

Definition of Terms

Roadmap to Success: Land the Perfect Job

Build a Research Database

Landing an Interview

Is this practice a good fit for YOU?

Chapter Summary and References

Chapter 6 Exam


Health Coaching in Medical Practices Final Exam

What Our Grads Say

Completing the Primal Health Coach Program has proven to be an invaluable asset to my coaching practice. I'm so much more prepared to explain the benefits of a primal lifestyle to my clients and coach them as they take their health, fitness, and performance to a higher level than they ever thought possible.

James Arthur

Certified Primal Health Coach

The Primal Health Coach Program expanded my access to and credibility with people who embrace primal principles but who may not have considered holistic medicine, enhancing my practice and extending my professional reach. 

Dr. Dana Leigh Lyons

Certified Primal Health Coach

The knowledge I learned from the Primal Health Coach Program allowed me to skillfully integrate for my patients the healing power of Periodontal Laser Therapy with the healing power of primal lifestyle and diet. 

Alvin H. Danenberg, DDS

Certified Primal Health Coach

Frequently Asked Questions

Why should I continue my learnings with a specialty course from the Primal Health Coach Institute?

You’re a certified health coach and you’re good at what you do, but it can be challenging to get past the front desk staff and capture the attention of a busy, overworked, stressed MD. This course prepares you to work with patients—which is different from working with clients within the general population—and prepares you for your job search by covering what to expect and giving you the tools and know-how to speak with medical practitioners and present an irrefusable proposal for collaboration. You don’t have to navigate securing a position as resident health coach in a medical practice alone.

How long will it take for me to complete the course and earn my certification?

You can proceed with your reading, viewing, and test taking at your own pace, logging into the course at any time and picking up where you left off. There are 6 core chapters. We suggest allowing for 4-5 hours per chapter, or approximately 30 hours in total. There’s no rush, and you have lifetime access to the material.

How difficult are the online course and exams, and what if I have trouble passing?

This course material is on a par with an upper-division college course but we present the material in an easy-to-read, totally digestible manner. There are exams at the end of each chapter and a final exam at the end of the course. If you score below 75 percent, you can return to the material for review, and then attempt the exam again and as many times as you need to pass it. If you struggle on the exams, our staff is here to help you with one-on-one support to ensure that your experience is positive.

I’ve taken other online courses and they didn’t live up to my expectations. How is this course different?

When you enroll in any of our courses you immediately become part of our community, and we’ll do everything in our power to make sure you reach your education and career goals. We’re so confident that the program and our organization will exceed your expectations that we offer a money-back guarantee. When you enroll in the Health Coaching in Medical Practices Specialist Certification course you gain access to course materials immediately. If the course isn’t to your liking or doesn't meet your needs we will issue a full refund, no questions asked, within 7 days of enrolling and if you've completed no more than 3 chapters of the course. Our refund policy gives you the opportunity to test drive the first 3 chapters of the course risk free. 

Will I be board-certified and able to be hired by a healthcare organization after taking this course?

This course includes information on insurance billing and board certification. In order to be hired by an organization that plans to bill insurance for your services, you must be board certified by the National Board of Health and Wellness Coaches. Our Master Coach Certification course prepares you to sit for the board-certifying exam. If, however, your business plan is structured around referrals from private MDs or other clinics and you or they will be billing patients directly, then board certification is not necessarily required. Every practice is different, so we advise you to have this discussion early in your job search.

You’ve got a passion for helping patients.
We’ve got the blueprint to make it happen.

Work in a medical practice alongside physicians, nurses, and associated staff to give patients continuity, support, and your “special sauce”—your skills combined with your life experience. We’ll provide you with a roadmap to seek out and find the perfect position, along with a toolkit of resources to carry with you.