On February 16, 2012 a legislative committee of the Vermont House of Representatives discussed proposed Bill H.524, http://www.leg.state.vt.us/docs/2012/bills/Intro/H-524.pdf, which if passed into law would give naturopaths, NDs, licensed in Vermont the opportunity to take a “pharmacology” exam and permit those who passed to “prescribe”.
Although I’m not a lawyer, I couldn’t understand how any government could pass such a vague law, one that didn’t specify what the test would cover, who would draw it up or what those who passed would be permitted to prescribe.
Based on my experience with NDs, I am certain that they do not have the education, skills or judgment required to safely and effectively prescribe drugs. I am certain that they know zilch about pharmacology and toxicology and believe that granting them the same privileges as medical doctors who practice evidence-based or scientific medicine have is dangerous. It is also highly deceptive in that it gives consumers the erroneous impression that NDs are the same as MDs when that is not true.
I expressed my concerns to the committee as did Ben, author of the blog, The Vermont Medicine Show, a Vermonter with a Masters in Philosophy but no college credits in any medical science. Ben explained his lack of qualifications to prescribe drugs and practice medicine to the committee and also told them that he had taken the “pharmacology” exam offered to NDs in Vermont and that he had passed it.
Harry Chen, MD, VT Commissioner of Health, and Chris Winters, an attorney and the Director of the VT Office of Professional Regulation, who are, I believe, the ones who introduced Bill H.524, spoke in favor of it as did naturopaths Sam Russo and William Warnock.
Sam and William represented VT NDs. I represented myself, the victim of an incompetent doctor; Ben represented himself, a VT small business owner and a concerned father. Madeleine Mongan, a lawyer with the Vermont Medical Society, was going to speak opposing the bill but do to lack of time, she had to return the following day to do so. Madeleine planned to give evidence showing that the NDs’ claim that their education is the equivalent of an MDs is erroneous.
Ben recorded some of the oral testimony and posted it on his blog: http://vermontmedicineshow.blogspot.com/2012/02/h524-naturopathic-prescription-license.html
This is the written testimony I submitted:
Hearing On Vermont Bill H.524
Naturopaths & Pharmacology
February 16, 2012
Belief-Based Medicine vs Evidence-Based Medicine
Naturopaths, NDs, lack the knowledge required to use drugs safely and effectively. They know nothing about pharmacology or toxicology.
Naturopaths practice a belief-based system of medicine rather than an evidence-based or scientific one. They believe in the healing power of nature and natural products. When presented with overwhelming evidence that their beliefs about silver were inaccurate and potentially dangerous, they ignored it showing that in addition to lacking the knowledge required to use drugs safely and effectively that they also lack the judgment required to do so.
Representing myself, the victim of an incompetent medical doctor, an MD.
I attached hardcopy of the following:
From the following link to the VT ND Formulary
http://vtprofessionals.org/opr1/naturopaths/info/Naturopathic Physician Formulary 20091211.pdf
I copied and submitted the unnumbered title page starting with, “Vermont Secretary of State Office of Professional Regulation 2009 Naturopathic Physician Formulary”, that precedes p. 1.
p. 1 marking the final item “Colloidal Silver Preparations”
p. 5 marking “Silver”
I also submitted hardcopy of:
A Wall Street Journal article by Jill Carroll (June 14, 2001; Marketplace; p. B1; Regulators Crack Down on Web’s New Miracle Cure: Colloidal Silver) which says that “federal regulators say it is a total scam.” It refers to colloidal silver.
Toxic Encounters Return with Us Now to Those Thrilling Days of Yesteryear Argyrol and Argyria; Ronald B. Mack, MD (NCMJ; sep 1988; vol 49, # 9; p 451-2) in which Dr. Mack describes cases of argyria, skin discolored by silver, and argyrosis, eyes discolored by silver, that he had seen in medical school.
If anyone would like me to send them the last two, please let me know. Since they are copyrighted, I can’t post them.
naturopathic education, naturopathic medical schools, naturopaths vermont, sam russo, william warnock, prescription drugs, incompetent doctors, dangerous medicine