When will licenses be required?
March 1, 2016
Why will it take so long to issue the licenses?
While the law will be enacted in October of 2014, it will take another 17 month for the Naturopathic Medicine Advisory Committee to promulgate regulations and implement the law. These regulations will cover everything from fees to the list of documents that NDs will have to submit to apply for a license.
Under what Board will NDs be licensed in Maryland?
NDs will be licensed by the Maryland Board of Physicians, where they will be represented by a Naturopathic Medicine Advisory Committee who will report to the board.
What is the Naturopathic Medicine Advisory Committee?
The Naturopathic Medicine Advisory Committee will consist of 2 NDs, 2 MDs or DOs, and 1 consumer member. The Committee is charged with developing regulations, procedures for issuance of licenses, a code of ethics, and continuing education requirements. The Committee will also advise the Board of Physicians regarding disciplinary actions.
What will be the scope of practice for NDs in Maryland?
- Order and perform physical and laboratory examinations, including phlebotomy, laboratory tests, orificial examinations, EKGs, and physiological function tests
- Order diagnostic imaging studies and interpret the reports of the studies
- Dispense and order natural medicines (foods, vitamins, enzymes, botanicals, homeopathics, etc. )
- Electromagnetic energy
- Therapeutic exercise for basic services
- Nutrition and health counseling
- Naturopathic musculoskeletal mobilization
Will NDs be permitted to prescribe pharmaceuticals under the current law?
No. The current law does not permit NDs to prescribe any pharmaceutical drugs. However, the bill does require the creation of a Naturopathic Formulary Committee that will outline a proposed formulary that includes pharmaceutical drugs. This proposed formulary will then need to be adopted by the Maryland General Assembly in order to be part of the naturopathic scope of practice.
Will NDs be primary care providers under the new law?
NDs will not be licensed as primary care providers under this law.
Will insurance cover naturopathic care under the new law?
The law does not include provisions for third party coverage of naturopathic services. However, licensure is the first step needed to eventually achieve insurance coverage for naturopathic services, and some insurance companies may decide to credential NDs as in-network providers. Additionally, when NDs are licensed in the state, they will be able to supply patients with paperwork that can be submitted for reimbursement.
What titles will NDs be permitted to use?
Titles protected by the law include, "Naturopath", "Naturopathic doctor", "Doctor of Naturopathy", "ND", and "N.D."
Will NDs be permitted to use the term "physician"?
No. Use of the term "physician" is specifically prohibited.
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