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Natural Therapies for Health, Wellness & Prevention

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Article: The Philosophy of Holistic Health Politics

Holistic Health Policies:

Natural Therapies for Health, Wellness & Prevention

Article by Dieter Luske N.D.-D.C.H.-D.M.H.-D.H


Natural Therapies united for Health, Wellness and Prevention

"Why are Natural Therapies (Complementary Medicine) not fully recognised by our government and medical establishments"?

What terrible thread to society could Natural Therapy be, other than Promoting good Health as outlined by the 'WHO - World Health Regulation"?

WHO Constitution

“Health is a state of complete physical, mental and social well-being
and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity”
.

The medical system, even so it is absolutely dedicated to helping the sick, is lacking behind in "Active Prevention and supporting Health.

Active Prevention and improving Health is what Natural Therapies of various modalities do best. Natural Therapists are destined to promote well-being, why than are we not seeing a constructive mechanism to include Natural Therapy in a holistic way into the "Overall Health System"?

The answers are varied, ranging from "lacking of evidence" to "fraud and quacks", and everything in between.

BUT, another damaging aspect is the long standing division and alienation between the varied Natural Therapy Associations and their various support groups.

As far back as I care to remember, questions of Education, Accreditation, Recognition,"Registration" or "Regulation" (Co-Regulation) have been passionately discussed. - Further more, the never ending internal competition of who or which treatment modality is more or less important has caused even more aggravation and division. - Add to that bruised ego's and our "industry is in a hell of disarray".

Remember ... the most important part is; "Support Natural Therapies" ... everything else is secondary.

The entire Natural Therapy profession needs "Support - Protection & Defending" against well organised and well funded efforts to drive natural therapy and therapists out of business, and to prevent Australians from being able to freely choose the forms of healthcare they wish to use.


What are the stumbling blocks?

The different levels of Recognised Education and "different mind sets" about "Registration".

Those subjects need more attention than ever.

Education: Bachelor Degree - Advanced Diploma or both?

With the introduction of a Bachelor Degree the usefulness of the Advanced Diploma has come under scrutiny.

This needs further distinction, Natural Therapies consists of many different Modalities and Professions. Most of the Natural Therapies are Not Suitable for "Registration", therefore they can continue Self or Co-Regulation.

The education for all Modalities need to be of a high standard, accredited and with credit allowance for a Bachelor Degree.

NOTE: I is widely suggested that only Naturopathy and Herbalism could be considered for Registration.


Registration - Co-regulation or both?

  • Considering all Natural Therapy Modalities, Registration could only be possible for Naturopathy / Herbalism, (still disputed)

  • Registration is mainly about "Protecting the Public" and Title protection. - One of the requirements is "Creating possible significant Harm".
    Pro Registration groups argue that Naturopathy and Herbalism does create possible significant Harm.

  • Self or Co-Regulation groups argue, there is No significant Harm, because of a different treatment philosophy.


Scope of Practice and Philosophy consideration:

  • Pro Registration Naturopaths argue they act as primary practitioners, they diagnose and practice evidence based Naturopathy and therefore there is possible significant Harm.

  • Self or Co-Regulation Naturopaths argue, they practice as complementary practitioners, and only diagnose for possible causes rather than to name a disease, treating the individual person, improving health, instead of treating a disease.
    * Some claim; Pro- Registration groups move too close to the Medical System.


Education - Accreditation and Registration Issues

  • Since the introduction of the Bachelor Degree, the Advanced Dip. seemed unnecessary, however because of different philosophies and attitudes about Naturopathic treatments, this is contested and argued about, and it gives rise to a further issue and complication, that of Registration.

  • To become registered a Bachelor Degree is required, which in itself is not a problem, - if Adv. Diploma holders prefer not to be registered.
    The problematic issue is that Registration includes "Title Protection".

  • Title protection is a tricky issues, it means only registered practitioners are allowed to call themselves Naturopath, therefore effectively Restricting "Unregistered Naturopaths" only because of their different view and philosophy.


Consequences of a change within the Natural Therapy System

  • Whenever something new is implemented it will cause an effect, a consequence. - The switch to a Bachelor Degree and possible registration for Naturopaths has "created possible unwelcome consequences."

  • This is similar to politics, if the winning party has 51% of the votes, and the opposition "only" 49%, it's still called a democracy, but in reality half the country has lost, which can't be good for the country.

  • In the case of Naturopathy, if pro-registration has 51% of votes against 49 of No votes, - the fall out and negative consequences are just too much.

  • However, the real issue is "NO ONE EVER VOTED", therefore both groups act on assumption on what they think is right.
    A limited choice of one or the other, makes this question into a dilemma. - Our world is not in black and white, it is in colour.
    We either need a vote which shows an overbearing majority for one or the other, or we need more choices.

  • Therefore, the consequences need to be recognised, considered and pathways need to be found in order to have a well functioning system for all.


Conclusion and possible Re-solution:

  • Education for future Natural Therapists has to stand up to scrutiny and needs to be streamlined in accordance with our general education system.

  • There is always room for additional education, certificates, diplomas, seminars and workshops on various natural modalities are an important part for practitioners and colleges as well.

  • Lets Not forget, Naturopathy is made up of Natural Therapies.

  • However, to be taken seriously by the general Public and practicing within the mainstream health system, a Bachelor Degree is appropriate, and because it has been implemented already, we know that it is not going to go away.

  • Therefore what can be the role of an Advanced Dip in Naturopathy?
    If the adv. Dip. is of a high standard, taught by an government approved training facility, accredited, and can be used as credit for a Bachelor Degree, than it can be part of a 2 tiered system.

    Unfortunately, if Registration will occur, there will be a Title issue, with a probable name change for the unregistered Naturopath.
    Holistic Natural Practitioner (Naturopractor?)

  • Other consequences have to be resolved for training facilities. - A possible solution is to provide Diploma Courses for all Natural Therapies, with the important addition of a "Credit System", to be implemented within a Bachelor's Degree. A bachelor degree could have a requirement of the addition of 5 "Elective Modalities".

  • In the case of an Adv. Diploma, full credit will need to be applied for specific part of that Diploma, if a practitioner decides to up-grade to a Bachelor Degree.


Do we need an Internal Referendum to give all groups an opportunity to vote for their preferred system?

How many Naturopath, Association and Colleges are actually for or against Registration - and for or against Adv Diploma or Bachelor Degree or both?


Article by .... Dieter Luske

 

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