There is a bill in the Pennsylvania that would allow the State to issue licenses to naturopathic "doctors" in the state. I disagree with this idea and sent off a letter to my state senator that read as follows:
I am writing to you concerning HB612 which has passed in the PA house. The bill would allow licensing of practitioners of naturopathic medicine. On the surface I can see how this would appear to be in the best interest of public safety. On further examination, it is clearly not the case.
Naturopathic medicine is an alternative medicine. Alternative medicine is not medicine but an alternative to conventional medicine.
To quote Tim Minchin, "By definition ... alternative medicine ... has either not been proved to work, or has been proved not to work. You know what they call alternative medicine that's been proved to work? Medicine."
By allowing practitioners of these unproven and, therefore, potentially harmful procedures to be licensed, we are legitimizing procedures that have not been proven to be effective. The danger is that a patient might view such procedures as a legitimate alternative to what their physician is recommending and that they might eschew effective treatment for questionable treatments.
There is a potential for real harm to patients if we allow this AND it should be noted that by licensing these people we are placing them on the same level as medical doctors in the eyes of insurance companies under section 2706 of the Affordable Care Act (Obamacare) which will only serve to muddy the waters even more.
Please vote against HB612 and urge your colleagues to do so as well. Thank you.
It concerns me that alternative medicines are starting to be seen as legitimate treatments for diseases and medical conditions when they are not proven to be effective! Not only could a patient be wasting his or her time and money on these treatments but it could be dangerous, as well. Naturopathic doctors do not receive the medical education that medical doctors do so they could do more harm than good.
We have a local television station with a "medical news" reporter who recently has been examining "complementary" medicine. It makes me want to scream.
Dr Oz, who I've mentioned many times here on my blog is another proponent of some questionable treatments and he is a medical doctor who I am concerned people will take seriously!
It's time to stop the madness, folks! Make sure that your representatives in your state and in Congress know how dangerous it is to legitimize alternative medicine!