Back to Browse Journals » Risk Management and Healthcare Policy » Volume 2

The practice and regulatory requirements of naturopathy and western herbal medicine in Australia

Authors Vivian Lin, Pauline McCabe, Alan Bensoussan, Stephen Myers, Marc Cohen, et al

Published 26 February 2009 Volume 2009:2 Pages 21—33

DOI https://dx.doi.org/10.2147/RMHP.S4652

Review by Single-blind

Peer reviewer comments 3

Vivian Lin1, Pauline McCabe1, Alan Bensoussan3,4, Stephen Myers5, Marc Cohen6, et al

1School of Public Health; 2Cochrane Consumers and Communication Review Group, Australian Institute for Primary Care, La Trobe University, Bundoora, Victoria, Australia; 3National Institute for Complementary Medicine; 4University of Western Sydney, Bankstown, New South Wales, Australia; 5NatMed-Research, Department of Natural and Complementary Medicine, Southern Cross University, Lismore, New South Wales, Australia; 6Department of Complementary Medicine, RMIT University, Bundoora West, Victoria, Australia; La Trobe University, Bundoora, Victoria, Australia

Abstract: Australian health workforce regulation is premised on the need to protect public health and safety. Specific criteria are set out by governments to ascertain the degree of risk and the need for government intervention. A study was undertaken to understand the current state of usage and the practice of naturopathy and western herbal medicine, and to ascertain whether statutory regulation was warranted. We found increased use of these complementary therapies in the community, with risks arising from both the specific practices as well as consumers negotiating a parallel primary health care system. We also found highly variable standards of training, a myriad of professional associations, and a general failure of current systems of self-regulation to protect public health and safety. Statutory regulation was the preferred policy response for consumers, insurers, general practitioners, and most of the complementary therapists. While we found a case for statutory registration, we also argue that a minimalist regulatory response needs to be accompanied by other measures to educate the public, to improve the standards of practice, and to enhance our understanding of the interaction between complementary and mainstream health care.

Keywords: health workforce regulation, complementary health care, protection of public health and safety, health care policy

Creative Commons License This work is published and licensed by Dove Medical Press Limited. The full terms of this license are available at https://www.dovepress.com/terms.php and incorporate the Creative Commons Attribution - Non Commercial (unported, v3.0) License. By accessing the work you hereby accept the Terms. Non-commercial uses of the work are permitted without any further permission from Dove Medical Press Limited, provided the work is properly attributed. For permission for commercial use of this work, please see paragraphs 4.2 and 5 of our Terms.

Download Article [PDF]  View Full Text [HTML][Machine readable]

 

Readers of this article also read:

Emerging and future therapies for hemophilia

Carr ME, Tortella BJ

Journal of Blood Medicine 2015, 6:245-255

Published Date: 3 September 2015

Advances in cancer pain from bone metastasis

Zhu XC, Zhang JL, Ge CT, Yu YY, Wang P, Yuan TF, Fu CY

Drug Design, Development and Therapy 2015, 9:4239-4245

Published Date: 18 August 2015

Focus on the potential role of ficlatuzumab in the treatment of non-small cell lung cancer

D'Arcangelo M, Cappuzzo F

Biologics: Targets and Therapy 2013, 7:61-68

Published Date: 3 March 2013

A novel preparation method for silicone oil nanoemulsions and its application for coating hair with silicone

Hu Z, Liao M, Chen Y, Cai Y, Meng L, Liu Y, Lv N, Liu Z, Yuan W

International Journal of Nanomedicine 2012, 7:5719-5724

Published Date: 12 November 2012

True story about HIV: theory of viral sequestration and reserve infection

Barasa S

HIV/AIDS - Research and Palliative Care 2011, 3:125-133

Published Date: 8 December 2011

Current and developing therapeutic agents in the treatment of Chagas disease

Werner Apt

Drug Design, Development and Therapy 2010, 4:243-253

Published Date: 17 September 2010

Crystallization after intravitreal ganciclovir injection

Pitipol Choopong, Nattaporn Tesavibul, Nattawut Rodanant

Clinical Ophthalmology 2010, 4:709-711

Published Date: 14 July 2010