What is naturopathic medicine?
Naturopathic medicine goes beyond simply offering “natural” treatments in place of pharmaceuticals. It is a distinct approach to healthcare that focuses on identifying and treating the root cause of disease instead of simply suppressing symptoms. Naturopathic medicine recognizes that everyone is unique and that treatments must be tailored each person’s specific circumstances. Prevention is central to the naturopathic healthcare model, with the end goal of attaining optimal health as opposed to merely being disease-free. Naturopathic Doctors (NDs) believe that the body is capable of healing itself, and strive to remove any obstacles standing in the way of this innate healing process. For more information about naturopathic medicine please visit www.oand.org and www.cand.ca
Will I have to stop seeing my family doctor?
No. I will never ask you to stop seeing your medical doctor. In fact, I encourage all my patients to book regular appointments with their family doctor. I believe that collaboration between healthcare providers is necessary for optimal health. If I ever feel that your interests would be best served by another practitioner, I will happily refer you. Ultimately, I want you to feel your best and to receive the best possible care. I look forward to working alongside your family doctor and to becoming a member of your healthcare team.
Are Naturopathic Doctors regulated in the province of Ontario?
Yes. Naturopathic Doctors (NDs) practicing in Ontario are regulated by the College of Naturopaths of Ontario. Registration with a governing body helps ensure that NDs have the knowledge, skill and judgment to carry out their role. ND, Naturopathic Doctor and Naturopath are protected titles. That means that only people who have demonstrated the education and qualification to practice can use the title. NDs are also regulated under the Regulated Health Professions Act, alongside other regulated health professions such as medical doctors and nurses.
How are Naturopathic Doctors trained?
All licensed Naturopathic Doctors (NDs) complete a minimum of three years' university-level training, including mandatory pre-medical courses such as biology, physiology and chemistry. This is followed by four years of study at an accredited naturopathic medical college. In naturopathic programs, NDs study the same basic medical and clinical sciences as other health care professionals, such as medical doctors and registered nurses. In addition to the standard medical curriculum, NDs are required to complete training in clinical nutrition, acupuncture, Traditional Chinese Medicine, botanical medicine, physical medicine, counseling and more. Finally, to be licensed to practice, NDs must pass two sets of rigorous licensing board exams. NDs are required to maintain their competency throughout their career by completing accredited continuing medical education courses.
How do I pay for a visit to a Naturopathic Doctor?
Visits with a Naturopathic Doctor are not covered under OHIP at this time. However, most extended healthcare plans cover naturopathic medicine, so check with your provider to see the amount of your coverage. In some cases, lab testing fees and supplement costs may also be covered depending on the type of plan you have. Direct billing is available for most insurance plans - please inquire with clinic reception to see if you are eligible.
What are your rates?
All visit prices are listed on the Natural Choice Medical Clinic service fees page. Naturopathic visits are HST exempt. Visit prices include all in-office treatment, in-office tests and assessment. Supplements, herbs and outside lab testing are not included in the visit price. Direct billing is available for most insurance plans - please inquire with clinic reception to see if you are eligible.
What will my initial visit look like?
All new patients should book a 60-minute initial visit. After you’ve booked your initial appointment you will be sent a customized intake form. The information you provide in the intake form gives me valuable insight into your case. Please take the time to fill out the intake form and submit it no later than 48 hours prior to your visit. In addition, please bring any medications/supplements that you are taking, as well as any previously completed lab work to your visit.
During your initial session, we will explore your full health history and clarify your health goals. Depending on your individual case, I may perform some physical exams, some in-office testing and/or recommend specific outside lab testing to be completed. Expect to be asked to fill out a diet diary as homework. In most cases, you will also be given some initial treatment recommendations to get started on.
What will my follow-up visits look like?
You can expect to be booking your first 45-minute follow-up in 3-4 weeks. This visit’s primary purpose is to serve as an educational session for you. I will take the time to break down your diet/lab results/hormonal profile/whatever it may be in detail. I am a firm believer in body literacy and health education as a method of empowerment. I want you to leave this visit feeling motivated to heal yourself! We will also follow-up on your initial treatment recommendations and adjust them as necessary.
All further follow-up appointments will range from 15-45 minutes depending on your health concerns and goals. In the beginning, as we work on the foundations of health, I recommend we meet at least once a month, for 3-4 months. Each visit provides an opportunity for you ask questions, for further investigations to be completed and for the treatment plan to be adjusted. If we have decided to make acupuncture a part of your treatment plan, I may recommend more frequent acupuncture visits.
Once your main concerns have been addressed, we will transition you to a maintenance plan. During this maintenance phase, visits are less frequent unless we run into a new or acute issue. It is during this phase that we would complete annual check-ups and screening, as well as update your health goals.