“If you have heard anything in the media recently about naturopathic medicine, the odds are it hasn’t been positive.
There have been stories about allegedly anti-vaccination naturopaths and, before that, a naturopath in Victoria who treated a child for aggressive behaviour with lyssinum — a homeopathic product made from rabid dog saliva.
But naturopaths are not anti-vaccination, nor do we accept bizarre remedies that lack science-based evidence.
In the Victoria case, the B.C. Naturopathic Association filed a complaint against that naturopath — who was not a member of our organization — with our regulator, the College of Naturopathic Physicians of B.C. It resulted in her leaving the profession.
If that case is all you know about naturopathic medicine, it’s unfortunate, because naturopaths have been recognized and regulated in B.C. since 1923 under the Medical Act.
Naturopathic medicine takes a different approach than conventional medicine, focusing more on the cause and prevention of disease than simply prescribing medicine, though that can be essential.
The approach is welcome. Two-thirds of British Columbians believe that “naturopathic doctors (NDs) provide an important complementary service to conventional medicine,” according to a 2018 Insights West poll. A third of B.C. families have consulted an ND.”
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