Frequently Asked Questions
q. How are naturopathic doctors trained?
a. Naturopathic doctors must meet the pre-medical requirements at an accredited university before attending naturopathic medical school. Usually a bachelor’s degree is required, but if all the criteria are met, a candidate may be accepted into naturopathic medical school after 3 years of undergraduate training. Naturopathic medical school is a full-time 4 year program where students are taught the medical sciences as well as the naturopathic modalities. Students also partake in a 2 year practicum where they see patients at clinics operated by the school. There are only 2 accredited naturopathic medical schools in Canada – the Boucher Institute of Naturopathic Medicine (BC) and the Canadian College of Naturopathic Medicine (ON).
q. How do you know your naturopathic doctor is properly trained and licenced in BC?
a. Your naturopathic doctor must have graduated from an accredited naturopathic medical school , pass the North American board exams and the BC board exams, and be registered and in good standing with the College of Naturopathic Physicians of BC.
q. Can naturopathic doctors in BC prescribe medication?
a. Recent legislation permits BC naturopathic doctors to prescribe medication, provided they complete the prescriptive authority course and pass the licencing examination. Naturopathic doctors can only prescribe medications that are within their scope of practice.
q. Are naturopathic visits covered by MSP (Medical Services Plan)?
a. No, but limited coverage is available to those on Premium Assistance. If you qualify for Premium Assistance, confirm with your ND if they will see Premium Assistance patients prior to making an appointment. Most extended medical plans will cover a portion of your naturopathic visit, and some plans will cover certain treatments or testing. Check with your extended medical insurance provider first as every plan is different.