Who They Are
The American Association of Naturopathic Physicians (AANP) represents approximately 5,000 licensed naturopathic physicians in the U.S. who are trained as experts in natural medicine. Their orientation is on finding the underlying cause of a patient’s condition rather than solely medicating the symptoms.
Licensed Naturopathic Doctors (NDs) provide natural treatments that are effective and safe. They perform physical exams, take comprehensive health histories, treat illnesses, and order lab tests, imaging procedures and other diagnostic tests. NDs work collaboratively with all branches of medicine, referring patients to other practitioners for diagnosis or treatment when appropriate.
Every licensed ND has graduated from a 4-year, post-graduate program at naturopathic medical schools that are accredited by agencies recognized by the US Department of Education. In order to be licensed to practice, an ND must pass an extensive postdoctoral exam and fulfill annual continuing education requirements. Currently, 22 states and territories license NDs to practice.
Naturopathic medicine is a patient-centered, comprehensive approach that aims to provide the most appropriate treatment for an individual’s needs. Licensed NDs educate patients about why they are unwell and provide them the tools for achieving optimal health.
The following principles outline the naturopathic approach to wellness and constitute the foundation of this distinct approach to health care: Healing Power of Nature; Identify and Treat the Causes; First Do No Harm; Doctor as Teacher; Treat the Whole Person; and Prevention.
Their Vision for the Future
The AANP vision is for licensed Naturopathic Doctors to guide and empower people to discover and experience improved health, optimal wellness, and effective management of disease through the principles and practices of naturopathic medicine.