About » Naturopathic Medical Education
Naturopathic physicians undergo training that is similar in structure and scope to that of medical and osteopathic doctors. Naturopathic medical colleges are four-year graduate schools with rigorous admissions requirements comparable to other medical schools. The Doctor of Naturopathic Medicine (ND) degree is awarded after classroom, clinic, and practical study. ND’s are trained in medical sciences including anatomy, physiology, biochemistry, microbiology, immunology, pharmacology, cardiology, neurology, radiology, minor surgery, obstetrics, gynecology, embryology, pediatrics, psychology, pharmacology, dermatology, and clinical and physical diagnosis. The training also includes extensive study of naturopathic philosophy and therapeutics including therapeutic nutrition, botanical medicine, homeopathy, ayurvedic medicine, hydrotherapy, manipulative therapy, and counseling. Because coursework in natural therapeutics is added to a standard medical curriculum, naturopathic doctors often receive significantly more hours of classroom education in these areas than the graduates of many leading medical schools, including Yale, Stanford, and Johns Hopkins.
Like many states and provinces, Washington’s laws require graduates of naturopathic medical schools to pass rigorous board examination in order to qualify for licensure. Washington NDs must also complete 20 hours per year of continuing education training in order to maintain their license.