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lancelotarnold

Regulation

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Naturopathy is practiced in many countries and is subject to different standards of regulation and levels of acceptance. The scope of practice varies widely between jurisdictions. The practice of naturopathy is illegal in two USA states.

Australia
In 1977, a committee reviewed all colleges of naturopathy in Australia and found that, although the syllabuses of many colleges were reasonable in their coverage of basic biomedical sciences on paper, the actual instruction bore little relationship to the documented course. In no case was any practical work of consequence available. The lectures which were attended by the committee varied from the dictation of textbook material to a slow, but reasonably methodical, exposition of the terminology of medical sciences, at a level of dictionary definitions, without the benefit of depth or the understanding of mechanisms or the broader significance of the concepts. The committee did not see any significant teaching of the various therapeutic approaches favoured by naturopaths. People reported to be particularly interested in homoeopathy, Bach's floral remedies or mineral salts were interviewed, but no systematic courses in the choice and use of these therapies were seen in the various colleges. The committee were left with the impression that the choice of therapeutic regime was based on the general whim of the naturopath and, since the suggested applications in the various textbooks and dispensations overlapped to an enormous extent, no specific indications were or could be taught.

The position of the Australian Medical Association is that "evidence-based aspects of complementary medicine can be part of patient care by a medical practitioner", but it has concerns that there is "limited efficacy evidence regarding most complementary medicine. Unproven complementary medicines and therapies can pose a risk to patient health either directly through misuse or indirectly if a patient defers seeking medical advice." The AMA's position on regulation is that "there should be appropriate regulation of complementary medicine practitioners and their activities."

In 2015, the Australian government found no clear evidence of effectiveness for naturopathy. Accordingly, In 2017 the Australian government named Naturopathy as a practice that would not qualify for insurance subsidy, saying this step would "ensure taxpayer funds are expended appropriately and not directed to therapies lacking evidence".

India
In India, naturopathy is overseen by the Department of Ayurveda, Yoga and Naturopathy, Unani, Siddha and Homoeopathy (AYUSH); there is a 5½-year degree in "Bachelor of Naturopathy and Yogic Sciences" (BNYS) degree that was offered by twelve colleges in India as of August 2010. The National Institute of Naturopathy in Pune that operates under AYUSH, which was established on December 22, 1986 and encourages facilities for standardization and propagation of the existing knowledge and its application through research in naturopathy throughout India.

North America
In five Canadian provinces, seventeen U.S. states, and the District of Columbia, naturopathic doctors who are trained at an accredited school of naturopathic medicine in North America, are entitled to use the designation ND or NMD. Elsewhere, the designations "naturopath", "naturopathic doctor", and "doctor of natural medicine" are generally unprotected or prohibited.

In North America, each jurisdiction that regulates naturopathy defines a local scope of practice for naturopathic doctors that can vary considerably. Some regions permit minor surgery, access to prescription drugs, spinal manipulations, midwifery (natural childbirth), and gynecology; other regions exclude these from the naturopathic scope of practice or prohibit the practice of naturopathy entirely.

Canada
Five Canadian provinces license naturopathic doctors: Ontario, British Columbia, Manitoba, Saskatchewan, and Alberta. British Columbia has the largest scope of practice in Canada allowing certified NDs to prescribe pharmaceuticals and perform minor surgeries.

United States
U.S. jurisdictions that currently regulate or license naturopathy include Alaska, Arizona, California, Connecticut, Colorado, District of Columbia, Hawaii, Kansas, Maine, Maryland, Minnesota, Montana, New Hampshire, North Dakota, Oregon, Puerto Rico, US Virgin Islands, Utah, Vermont, and Washington. Additionally, Florida and Virginia license the practice of naturopathy under a grandfather clause.
U.S. jurisdictions that permit access to prescription drugs: Arizona, California, District of Columbia, Hawaii, Kansas, Maine, Montana, New Hampshire, Oregon, Utah, Vermont, and Washington.
U.S. jurisdictions that permit minor surgery: Arizona, District of Columbia, Kansas, Maine, Montana, Oregon, Utah, Vermont, and Washington.
U.S. states which specifically prohibit the practice of naturopathy: South Carolina and Tennessee.

United Kingdom
Naturopathy is not regulated in the United Kingdom. In 2012, publicly funded universities in the United Kingdom dropped their alternative medicine programs, including naturopathy.

Switzerland
The Swiss Federal Constitution defines the Swiss Confederation and the Cantons of Switzerland within the scope of their powers to oversee complementary medicine. In particular, the Federal authorities must set up diplomas for the practice of non-scientific medicine. The first of such diplomas has been validated in April 2015 for the practice of naturopathy. There is a long tradition for naturopathy and traditional medicine in Switzerland. The Cantons of Switzerland make their own public health regulations. Although the law in certain cantons is typically monopolistic, the authorities are relatively tolerant with regard to alternative practitioners.

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