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Education & Licensing of Naturopathic Doctors
 
Education

"A licensed naturopathic doctor (N.D.) attends a four-year graduate-level naturopathic medical school and is educated in all of the same basic sciences as an M.D., but also studies holistic and nontoxic approaches to therapy with a strong emphasis on disease prevention and optimizing wellness. In addition to a standard medical curriculum, the naturopathic doctor is required to complete four years of training in clinical nutrition, acupuncture, homeopathic medicine, botanical medicine, psychology, and counseling (to encourage people to make lifestyle changes in support of their personal health). A naturopathic doctor takes rigorous professional board exams so that he or she may be licensed by a state or jurisdiction as a primary care general practice physician." Quoted excerpt from the American Association of Naturopathic Physician's website.
 
Please click on the following links to learn more about the six accredited programs for Naturopathic Medicine in North America:
* Bastyr University in Seattle, Washington     www.bastyr.edu
* National College of Naturopathic Medicine in Portland, Oregon  www.ncnm.edu
* Southwest College of Naturopathic Medicine in Phoenix, Arizona   www.scnm.edu
* University of Bridgeport - College of Naturopathic Medicine in Bridgeport, Connecticut
  www.bridgeport.edu
* Canadian College of Naturopathic Medicine in Toronto, Ontario   www.ccnm.edu
* Boucher Institue of Naturopathic Medicine in Vancouver, BC  www.binm.org 

 

Licensing 

 

"Currently, 15 states, the District of Columbia, and the United States territories of Puerto Rico and the United States Virgin Islands have licensing laws for naturopathic doctors. In these states, naturopathic doctors are required to graduate from a four-year, residential naturopathic medical school and pass an extensive postdoctoral board examination (NPLEX) in order to receive a license.  Licensed naturopathic physicians must fulfill state-mandated continuing education requirements annually, and will have a specific scope of practice defined by their state's law." Quoted excerpt from the American Association of Naturopathic Physician's website.

 

The states that currently have licensing laws for naturopathic doctors are Alaska, Arizona, California, Connecticut, District of Columbia, Hawaii, Idaho, Kansas, Maine, Montana, New Hampshire, Oregon, Utah, Vermont, and Washington.

 

In states which offer naturopathic licensing, naturopathic doctors are considered primary care physicians, and they may diagnose and treat patients, contract with insurance companies, and prescribe certain prescription drugs.  Use of the title N.D. is only allowed by those who have completed the four-year residential program, passed the NPLEX national board exams, and received a state license.  Only those who have attended a 4 year, accredited program may sit for the NPLEX examination.

 

The state of Texas does NOT regulate naturopathic medicine or the use of the title 'N.D', which means that anyone may call themselves a naturopathic doctor.  Amy Tyler, ND* attended Bastyr University's fully accredited, four-year doctorate program and passed the NPLEX board exams; she carries a current and valid Vermont license to practice as a naturopathic doctor in the state of Vermont.  Since Texas does not license NDs at this time, Amy Tyler, ND* cannot prescribe pharmaceutical drugs, diagnose, or treat disease in the state of Texas.  For this reason, if you choose to consult with Amy Tyler, ND, it is recommended that you also continue services with your primary care physician.