Naturopathic Doctors
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Img43.jpgNaturopathic doctors are primary care doctors clinically trained in natural therapeutics and whose philosophy is derived in part from a Hippocratic teaching more than 2,000 years old: Vis medicatrix naturae---nature is the healer of all diseases. 

Their practice is based on the same basic bio-medical science foundation that allopathic practice is; however, their philosophies and approaches differ considerably from their conventional counterparts. 

Naturopathic doctors diagnose disease and treat patients by using natural modalities such as physical manipulation, clinical nutrition, herbal medicine, homeopathy, counseling, acupuncture and hydrotherapy, among others. They choose treatment based on the individual patient, not based on the generality of symptoms. This approach has proven successful in treating both chronic and acute conditions.

 

Patient Satisfaction

The preliminary findings of a naturopathic patient survey by the Project for Integration into Health Care Plans confirm that naturopathic care achieves the goals of managed care systems. The results of the survey (135 patients in five practices) demonstrate patient satisfaction:

  • 75% identified their naturopathic physician as their primary care-giver 
  • 73% indicated that their first call for health issues is to their naturopathic physician 
  • 97% responded that if insurance was not an issue, their ND would be their first choice 
  • Patients will pay for naturopathic care out of pocket. David Eisenberg's landmark study reported that American consumers spent $13.7 billion out of their own pockets for alternative medicines in 1990. 
     

Health promotion and disease prevention

Health promotion and disease prevention are corner-stones of naturopathic care. Nutritional counseling and lifestyle modification are integral parts of naturopathic training and practice. Preventive care results in cost savings as health is maintained, disease avoided, and costly procedures foregone. Preliminary findings of the Project for Integration into Health Care Plans include:
 

  • 49% responded that they had decreased or discontinued conventional medical care 
  • 16% responded that they had foregone surgery or other procedures 
  • 92% responded that the effect on their lifestyle was excellent (39%) or good. 
  • 63% responded that persistent or recurrent problems besides those that brought them to a ND had improved with naturopathic care


Scientific Basis for Naturopathic Medicine

  • There have been 3,500 randomized clinical studies on natural medicine published in the past 10 years.
  • The "Textbook of Natural Medicine" contains over 10,000 citations to the peer reviewed scientific literature documenting the efficacy of naturopathic therapies.
  • One of the commonly used botanical medicines used by naturopathic physicians, gingko biloba, has been subject to 450 published research studies, 250 of that were clinical.
  • NDs use standard scientific diagnostic tools to assess and monitor patients, including physical exams, laboratory tests and diagnostic imaging.
  • "Naturopathic medical college prepares NDs with a biological and biomedical education of the same breath and depth that prepares an MD to be primary care physicians." Oregon Office of Educational Policy and Planning.
  • "Lifestyle modifications is the only effective modality for preventing and reversing chronic degenerative disease." The Kellogg Report - The Impact of Nutrition, Environment, and Lifestyle of Americans; Beasley, Swift 1989.

 

 
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