1. Who says that naturopathy “continues to grow”? In the 2004 NCCAM survey, the number of people using the services of naturopaths barely registered. There is no public demand for licensed naturopaths. The push for regulation is almost totally special-interest driven — by “degreed” naturopaths (and their parents), their expensive schools, and the supplement industry. Licensure is also about excluding their major competitors, the “traditional” naturopaths who greatly outnumber them and have little or no interest in being regulated.

    Certainly the push for licensure of “degreed” naturopaths has intensified since the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act of 2010 mandates third party reimbursement of any health care practitioner regulated by a state.

    Regulation requires standards which naturopathy simply don’t have. The last licensure bill to fail in Colorado notably would have also set up a three-year task force to explore what modalities naturopaths offer to the public. Legislators were apparently unsure of the chaotic collection of practices camouflaged as “natural” and “gentle.”

    An informal survey of the websites of Colorado’s “degreed” naturopaths indicates that they practice a hodge-podge of invalidated and unvalidated practices: some outright dangerous (e.g. Peat Therapy), some use gadgets banned by the FDA, and not a few are downright cruel, such as highly restricted diets with detoxing regimes for cancer patients. No two naturopaths engaged in the same diagnostic testing or treatments.

    It is also common that after becoming licensed, naturopaths will come back to legislators, asking for medical privileges, such as prescribing and minor surgery, indicating that naturopath licensure is really just about getting the camel’s nose in the tent by people who really want to play physician.

  2. Regina Mowry L.M.T.

    So a restricted diet to organic fruits and vegetables and detoxing to remove the toxins that caused the cancer in the first place is cruel? What is chemotherapy then? What happened to freedom of choice? Of course naturopaths are pushing for licensure and of course they want to get reimbursed by insurance companies instead of seeing the money come directly out of their patients pockets. We have built our “healthcare” system on “sick care”. We treat symptoms instead of preventing the disease in the first place where a naturopath works with the patient to help them lead a healthier lifestyle. Of course no two naturopaths use the same diagnosis and procedure…this is because they treat the individual and not the disease and no two people are the same. Nearly every disease we deal with now has a multifactorial etiology. That means we need to have multiple treatment methods! They want to boost the supplement industry? Really! Compared to what? Doctors that boost the pharmaceutical industry which kills more people every year than every illegal drug combined! If a person chooses not to go to a naturopathic doctor and they prefer their medical doctor instead then by all means go to your medical doctor. However, I think we have a right to a more integrated health care system in which we can seek advice from our N.D. and our M.D. and not worry about costs not covered by our insurance providers.

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