Naturopathic Scope of Practice Becomes Modern in CT
CONNECTICUT GOVERNOR SIGNS BILL TO MODERNIZE NATUROPATHIC SCOPE OF PRACTICE
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Association of Accredited Naturopathic Medical Colleges
Contact: Candace Tyler
American Association of Naturopathic Physicians
Contact: Mike Jawer, Director of Government and Public Affairs
Connecticut Naturopathic Physicians Association
Contact: David Brady, ND
Hartford, CT – Governor Dannel Malloy today signed a bill to provide a modernized scope of practice for naturopathic physicians, amending an antiquated licensure law that dates from 1922. The bill had previously passed both the House and the Senate unanimously. It is now Public Act 14-231 and takes effect October 2, 2014.
Connecticut naturopathic doctors (NDs) will now be formally able to practice consistent with their education and training: to diagnose and treat disease, order laboratory testing, perform phlebotomy and other office procedures, and to use counseling, physical medicine, and the material sciences (nutrition medicine, botanical medicine) in treating patients.
“We are thrilled that the 90-year-old scope of practice in Connecticut is being modernized,” said Dr. David Brady, Vice Provost, Health Sciences Division of the University of Bridgeport, who co-lead, along with Rick Liva, ND, the coordinated efforts of a coalition that included the Connecticut Naturopathic Physicians Association, the University of Bridgeport, and numerous supportive constituents from the naturopathic and allied health care fields. “This expanded scope,” Brady continued, “reflects the advanced model of naturopathic medicine that has been practiced safely throughout the country for decades. The citizens of our state are sure to benefit. While this needed modernization formally codifies much of what NDs in Connecticut have been doing for many years, in the 2015 legislative session we look forward to further expanding the scope of practice so that NDs can serve even more fully as primary care providers. Our medical model, focusing on prevention and lifestyle changes, is sorely needed.”
Naturopathic physicians are licensed in 20 states and territories. To become licensed, an ND must attend a four-year naturopathic medical school that is accredited through the U.S. Department of Education. Accredited naturopathic medical schools train naturopathic doctors in the same basic sciences as MDs. They also provide training in holistic and nontoxic approaches to preventing disease, optimizing wellness, and treating various health conditions. The graduating doctor must then pass a rigorous professional licensing exam.
“Passage of the law reflects the public’s growing confidence in naturopathic medicine as an effective form of medicine,” remarked Jud Richland, CEO of the American Association of Naturopathic Physicians. “Patients are increasingly demanding the kind of whole-person care delivered by naturopathic doctors. One by one, states are enacting – or expanding – laws to license highly skilled naturopathic doctors so that citizens have access to the kind of care that so many Americans are seeking.”