Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Accredited Naturopathic Schools - Article 2

In a recent exchange, http://rosemary-jacobs.blogspot.com/2013_08_01_archive.html, a student at an accredited naturopathic school in Canada told me that his school is considered a medical school because the students there get an education comparable to that of medical doctors. Since he had previously stated, “…NDs do not have the same privileges as MDs in Canada, not even close,” I asked him why if NDs have an education comparable to that of MDs, they aren’t given the same privileges that MDs have. He didn’t respond. If any of you knows the answer, please tell me. I’d love to know. 

Anyone with a degree from an accredited naturopathic school in either the US or Canada can be licensed as a naturopath, ND, in any and all of the states and provinces that license them meaning that the educations they get in all their accredited North American schools are considered to be the same, http://www.cnme.org/. I know of several NDs with degrees from Canadian schools who are practicing in the US. 

Based on my investigations and personal experience with NDs who hold degrees from accredited ND schools, I am quite certain that their educations are not the equivalent of an MD’s, not even close, http://rosemaryjacobs.com/naturopaths.html 
and I’m not the only one who has looked into the matter who has arrived at that conclusion. 

NDs who constantly insist that they get the same education in their 4-year accredited schools that MDs get in their 4-year institutions usually fail to add that most NDs start practicing when they finish school whereas MDs are required to do hospital residencies which for those going into primary care, the area NDs claim to specialize in, is a minimum of three additional years. In other words medical doctors spend a minimum of 3 more years after earning degrees from 4-year medical schools getting a hands-on education as they work under the supervision of experienced doctors in hospitals. http://www.aanmc.org/education/comparing-nd-md-curricula.php. Evidently, their 4 years of study in medical school isn’t considered sufficient to prepare them to treat patients but 4 years of study of what NDs claim is the equivalent of that education in an ND school is? I don’t think so, but that’s just part of the problem.

While a few NDs are starting to do residencies now because jurisdictions who license them are beginning to require it, they are usually doing one year residencies and they are usually doing them in clinics or private naturopathic practices not hospitals. http://www.np-ga.com/currentresidencies.html. Heck, unlike MDs, NDs don’t have hospitals. Unlike MDs, they haven’t opened hospitals or been doing surgery and caring for the acutely ill in them since the founding of naturopathy in 1902 when they were called “drugless healers”. And even today where naturopaths are licensed in several jurisdictions as primary care physicians, they aren’t permitted to do anything but minor surgery. They can’t do invasive procedures in which people are cut open. So, yeah, they may learn anatomy in their schools by dissecting cadavers, but they don’t gain experience observing or working on the anatomy of living human beings laying opened on the operating table. Neither do they observe and care for people in serious crises and emergency situations. I think that most anyone who has ever been a patient in a hospital or spent time visiting one will tell you that what you see there is very different than what you see anywhere else. My guess is that anyone who has ever been a hospital patient or visited one realizes the huge difference between seeing and treating very sick people and those with minor complaints or chronic illnesses. 

But even without taking into account medical residencies, how can NDs possibly learn all the same scientific disciples in their 4-year accredited schools that MDs learn in theirs in the same depth as MDs do when in addition to courses labeled as basic medical sciences that medical doctors take naturopaths must also take courses that teach and prepare them to practice so many additional modalities like homeopathy, botanical medicine, physical therapies, counseling, and nutrition? http://www.scnm.edu/academics/nd-degree/nd-scope-of-practice. Are there really enough hours in the day during a 4-year course of study to cram in all that MDs, psychologists, registered dietitians, physical therapists, homeopaths and herbalists learn in order to practice their specialties? How could there be? Do the math.

And at 4-year accredited naturopathic schools located in places where NDs are not permitted to prescribe or use drugs, while they may take a course called “pharmacology”, how can they get practical experience with pharmaceuticals when neither they nor their ND professors are permitted to use them? And why is it that NDs who have degrees from ND schools where they are not permitted to use prescription drugs are permitted to use them if and when they become licensed in a state that permits NDs to use pharmaceuticals? That sounds very dangerous to me. 

Maybe I’m not the only one who has investigated and concluded that NDs most certainly do no get an education equivalent to that of MDs in their schools. Maybe that is why NDs in Canada aren’t granted the same privileges that MDs have there.


  1. Rosemary,
    Have you ever seen this video? It's good for a chuckle...:

  2. Thank you so much. I hadn't seen it, but my friends will. I'll be sure to share it.

  3. You appear to be someone with a vendetta... Or at the very least, someone who has a dog in this race...

  4. Call it whatever you want. Have you read my webpage? http://rosemary-jacobs.blogspot.com. I am a 71 year old woman who was seriously disfigured over 50 years ago by a kind, caring but totally ignorant, incompetent MD who, because he hadn’t read his medical journals, didn’t know what most other MDs had learned years before him - that taking silver internally is all risk and no benefit. It can seriously disfigure you. It can cause argyria, gray skin. That is what it did to me. I learned there was no cure and got on with my life until 1995 when I discovered that silver was being used, promoted and sold by people who called themselves “alt med practitioners” who claimed that taking it internally offered benefits and that it was totally safe. When I asked them for evidence to substantiate their claims, the few who would talk to me gave me quotes from old dead quacks who they fraudulently presented as reputable living doctors, studies on the benefits of silver when used as a disinfectant and in approved topical drugs to treat burns, and unverifiable testimonials from satisfied customers never mentioning the testimonials, of which there are many, of dissatisfied customers. When they scoffed at my evidence showing that they were wrong, I predicted new cases of argyria went on the warpath posting a website warning of the dangers. Unfortunately, I was right. There are now many new cases of argyria cased by these alt “remedies”.

  5. Over the years many people told me that naturopaths, NDs, had told them to take silver supplements. It never occurred to me that the NDs could have been the ones with degrees from “accredited 4-year naturopathic schools”. I simply couldn’t fathom that their teachers would be so ignorant that they didn’t know about silver and argyria since there is a large body of scientific literature on the topic. Then I discovered how wrong I was. See the details here, http://rosemaryjacobs.com/naturopaths.html. Based on my dealings with licensed, degreed NDs and my investigation of what they believe and practice, I concluded that they are as incompetent and ignorant as the MD of old who injured me. They are dangerous and should not be given the privileges MDs have. They haven’t earned them. I am doing my best to warn the public of the danger. If you call that a vendetta, so be it. If you are implying a negative connotation, I respond that such a vendetta is justified, even called for, and that it is far superior to endangering unsuspecting people by injecting them with a heavy metal toxin like silver and with “practicing medicine” when you lack the education and training to do so, even if you are too ignorant to know that.

  6. Dog in the race? Read my webpage. Google me. I’m not a doctor or a scientist. I don’t compete for business with NDs either by “practicing medicine” or selling supplements. I’m the victim of an incompetent doctor who was as ignorant and negligent as the degreed NDs of today are, only he had a much better excuse than they do because so much less was known about treating disease 50 years ago than is known today.

  7. This is a link to my webpage, not the one in my comment above. http://rosemaryjacobs.com. If you go there, you will read my story and the story of the silver supplement fraud. If you google my name, you will find stories about me by reporters who have interviewed me and investigated my story.

  8. If I wanted to be an MD I would have gone to a conventional medical school. I am a naturopathic doctor and it irritates me when others make that statement. The only similarities is the basic sciences taught by PhD's in their field. Although we do learn physical exams (a full year), labs and radiology, how we utilize the information is based on our basic approach to health and disease. I don't hear ANP's or chiropractors state their education is the same as MD's, why should ND's. I believe this hurts our medicine more than It helps.

    As a naturopathic educator in clinical settings, my contract was bought out for a quarter so I could rotate through the UW internal medicine and Family practice clinic. The supervising MD I was working with made an interesting statement concerning brand new internal medicine residents fresh out of medical school. He stated 4th year ND students were 2 years ahead of new residents in ambulatory medicine but by their 3rd year they catch up. What you don't realize Rosemary is that we are ambulatory medicine and never plan to work in hospitals. We do have residencies throughout the nation in clinical settings and yes a few hospital but we don't at this time have enough for all graduating students. This is an issue that I am hoping will be solved soon. But our students walk out with a solid clinical education as stated by this UW Internal Medicine MD.
    You tend to misjudge us, I just read a job advertisement at Cedar Sinai looking for naturopathic doctors to work in their new integrative medical clinic in Los Angeles. In my office I work with ANP's and MD's who appreciate our approach to understanding the cause of health issues. ND's lecture at conventions to MD on Genomics, functional medicine and more. We are not all the whack jobs you seem to say we are.
    I have lectured to Family Medicine ANP's at the UW on alternative approaches to Women's healthcare, sat on panels at the UW, worked with UW MD students who rotate through Bastyr
    Did you know the most famous homeopaths are Medical Doctors? That homeopathy in Europe is extremely popular and you can't buy any remedies OTC but need a doctor's prescription. I find it so amusing that the "I hate naturopath" blogs love to use homeopathy against us but was developed and promoted by MD's.

    So much to say, but I will stop here. I know your mind is set and you are locked into the same medical model that poisoned you. Yes, I will stay anonymous due to my well known name. I have been told over and over again not to engage with those who are negative about our medicine. As always, stay healthy.

  9. I have no idea why NDs who have degrees from 4-yr accredited ND schools insist that they have educations that are the equivalent of MDs. I know that isn’t true although I don’t know if the NDs making the claim know it. However, based on listening to the testimony so many of them gave to VT state legislature committees, I believe they say that in order to be granted all the same privileges MDs have like prescription rights and insurance reimbursement. I suspect that they believe that once they have those rights and are considered equivalents that they will pickup enough patients to earn their livings practicing naturopathy. Presently, I don’t think they can do that here in VT.

    Can you tell me how to verify what the supervising MD said? Do you know of any survey asking MDs supervising both MD & ND residents that asks how they compare at different stages of their residencies and what the answers were?

    I realize you don’t intend to work in hospitals. I believe that very few MDs plan to work in hospitals today either, except those who become hospitalists. However, I don’t think anyone can learn about medicine without working in a hospital and experiencing disease and death first hand.

    I’m sorry but I don’t believe that NDs “walk out with a solid clinical education”. Anyone with such an education would never have included silver for internal use in their formulary. Neither would they use untested supplements that aren’t standardized for purity and potency. And they certainly would not use homeopathic remedies and a lot of the other nonsense NDs routinely use like the wet sock treatment.

    Are the most famous homeopaths who are medical doctors alive and practicing today? If so, who are they? What are their names? And are they famous anywhere other than in homeopathic and alt med circles? I am quite aware that homeopathy is popular in Europe. In fact, I know 2 European MDs (and one S American) who are reformed homeopathic doctors. They say that what homeopathy really taught them is the power of the placebo effect.

    The medical model that poisoned me stopped using silver internally over 50 years ago. It is the medical model you follow, praise, promote and practice that uses it and poisons people with it today. Instead of calling me names, would you like to explain that?

  10. Ok two can play at the prove me game. You did not mention ND's working with MD's, are those same MD's also promoting a profession who you state teaches the use of silver in their education. Have you called Cedar Sinai to ask them why they are hiring ND's s' since we are "dangerous" based on your "feelings" that our clinical education is inadequate? Wow, two European MD's and 1 S American MD who are reformed homeopaths out of how many? I just sat at Genomic Conference in San Diego half of which (over 200 attendees) were reformed RCT, reductionist MD's who saw the flaws in their medicine. Integrative medicine is the future, you are just stuck on a one way silver train and so narrowly focused on VT's old formulary that you can't see the forest for the trees.
    I get the impression that whatever I say you consider a bold face lie, just making up facts such as my rotation through the Roosevelt UW Clinic in Seattle. Sad, it's just your way, a very rigid perspective based on a life changing experience. I know the doctor's names but how do I know you won't start harassing them, like your lovely letter to the Alaska.
    By the how about those cases were ND's have poisoned patients with silver? Please names a places if you can. Also, make sure the cases you come up with are 4 year ND Med school graduates, not the diploma mill unD's.
    I was in charge of IV's at my clinic for several years (mmm, a 55 hour class in IV's, did nurses get this, plus IV shifts at schools), not a one included any metal of any type. All were nutritionally used for cancer patient as prescribed by their MD's working with ND's.
    Bring it on Rosemary, I find this very conversation to be quite enjoyable, I love a good argument. By the way I will start researching reported silver poisoning and get back to you with statistics. In Health, anonymous.

  11. Anonymous, as i stated above, “The medical model that poisoned me stopped using silver internally over 50 years ago. It is the medical model you follow, praise, promote and practice that uses it and poisons people with it today. Instead of calling me names, would you like to explain that?”

    You haven’t addressed that yet although you are still calling me names. Neither have you explained how it is that NDs routinely use untested “remedies” that have never been standardized for purity or potency or presented a body of objective evidence that consistently gives the same results that shows that homeo remedies offer benefits. (Of course, if such a body of evidence did exist, chemists would have to throw out chemistry as we know it today, the very chemistry NDs claim they are taught in their schools.).

    But the funniest most ironic thing of all is that you are asking me to believe all that you say about your profession because MDs and hospitals employ NDs. You want me to believe that NDs know all about health and medicine because you claim that MDs think that they do. As I’ve stated repeatedly, I was injured early in life by an incompetent but caring MD. I learned a valuable lesson. I don’t trust experts. I look at the evidence. So far neither you, Anonymous, nor any of your colleagues has presented me with a shred of evidence showing that anything NDs learn in their schools or use in their practices is based on objective evidence showing benefits that outweigh the risks, and frankly, Dear Anonymous, as I’ve stated repeatedly, that scares the hell out of me. You are dangerous. In stead of saying, My God, I'm sorry that the VT NDs with degrees from accredited ND schools included silver and other noxious substances in their formulary, there is no excuse for that, you just brush it off showing that you are concerned with damage control rather than patient safety and leaning about what helps and harms people.

    Hopefully, people reading my blog are coming to the same conclusion which would explain why you are so angry with me, calling me names, ignoring the issues, and trying to convince me that you are competent because MDs say that you are.

    Sorry, I don’t know what you mean by my “lovely letter to the Alaska”.

  12. You might be interested in a new blog http://www.naturopathicdiaries.com . It's by an "apostate" naturopath, who spent $250,000 to get an ND degree, but then realized she'd been sold a lot of baloney.

  13. Thank you so much, Beth. I did see a blog post from that site and have meant to post it here and to read through the entire site myself.