CEN-standardization process for naturopathy

Interview with Tonella Doro about the CEN-standardization process on the occasion of the 18th Annual General Assembly of ANME in Frankfurt-Main

Minutes taken from memory by Nora Laubstein, 1st March 2018

NL: Dear Mrs. Doro, thank you a lot for coming to our event together with you translator. There are a lot of questions especially on the issue „naturopathy“, because this term is worldwide used differently. There is the Naturopathic Doctor/ND in Canada, the USA or Australia, partly with academic medical basic education, but it also can be purchased as weekend-title for ca. 2000€. Furthermore in South Europe „naturopaths“established themselves, each following the national legislation. Also there are most different definitions of „naturopathy“: On one side as independent single form of therapy in the context of other CAM-therapies and on the other side as a general claim for all global naturopathic diagnosis or therapy methods...

Question: Can you bring a little light into the dark there? Was do you understand as „naturopathy“?

What means „naturopathy“?

  1. WHO-Benchmark-Naturopathy

  2. a) In general, naturopathy emphasizes prevention, treatment and the promotion of optimal health through the use of therapeutic methods and modalities which encourage the self-healing process – the vis medicatrix naturae. The philosophical approaches of naturopathy include prevention of disease, encouragement of the body's inherent healing abilities, natural treatment of the whole person, personal responsibility for one's health, and education of patients in health-promoting lifestyles. Naturopathy blends centuries-old knowledge of natural therapies with current advances in the understanding of health and human systems. Naturopathy, therefore, can be described as the general practice of natural health therapies.
    b) Many of the philosophical principles that underpin naturopathic practice can be traced to the teachings of Stoicism in ancient Greece and the practice of medicine in the Hippocratic schools. In addition to these ancient roots, naturopathic practice emerged from an amalgamation of the philosophy, techniques, science and principles that typified the alternative healing systems of the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries, particularly those related to vitalism. These alternative approaches tended to focus both on health promotion and on health-care regimes that supported the patient’s innate healing processes.

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Traditional European Natural Medicine TEN


The 'Traditional European Natural Medicine' with the acronym TEN describes an autonomous, rational comprehensible and teachable medical system, which links the traditional roots of medical science with 'modern' insights and hypotheses and further integrates diagnostic and therapeutic developments that are compatible to the TEN system. It is less de ned by the diagnostic and therapeutic methods used, but by the underlying thinking and working model, which basic elements and characteristic aspects will be outlined in the following. TEN is the in Europe originated and further developed correlate to TCM (Traditional Chinese Medicine), for example, or to Ayurveda, and is mainly practiced by natural health professionals in Central Europe, but more and more by naturopathic-oriented physicians as well.


A ghost haunts Europe’s CAM professions: diagnosis!

Dr. Vera Paola Termali, President of SIHeN, Professional Association of Italian Heilpraktikers and Naturopaths

Last month the discussion about CAM in Italy became hot, when the Ministry of Health realized that at the beginning of 2013 a law was issued which allowed all professions without a dedicated regulation to be practiced under the supervision of professional associations and through a UNI Norm, a quality standard  certification.
This framework law includes a variety of professions, ranging from web designers to graphologists, but some professional associations of naturopaths decided to put also naturopathy under this umbrella. The UNI Norm defines Naturopathy following the “Benchmarks for Training in Naturopathy”, issued by the WHO back in 2010, which also gives a standard education value of 1500 hours, 400 of which dedicated to practice.

It seemed a step forward, but, being a norm and not a law, it is not compulsory, so that an important issue continues to be missing: the harmonization and implementation of education, which in Italy can range from 300 to 1500 hours, without any control. Stimulated by other professional associations, both academic and naturopathic,  the Ministry of Health made the critical question: “are Italian naturopaths diagnosing and curing? If yes, then this is a health profession and must undergo limitations, either by a new law or by specific regulations issued by the Ministry.”

Naturopathic Medicine Week

Washington, D.C., September  - The U.S. Senate unanimously passed a resolution designating October 7 – October 13 as Naturopathic Medicine Week.

The resolution recognizes the value of naturopathic medicine in providing “safe, effective, and affordable health care...” and encourages Americans to learn about the role of naturopathic physicians in preventing chronic and debilitating conditions.