News : Naturopathic Doctors Rely on Science to Heal Their Patients

Sep 10, 2013

Originally published by Heikki Perry on Exeter Patch September 9th, 2013

EXETER, N.H. — With little known about the education and practice of naturopathic physicians, the new law mandating insurance coverage is shedding light on this highly effective treatment option.

A 2013 law requires New Hampshire insurers to provide coverage for services delivered by naturopathic doctors if those services would be covered when provided by other primary care providers. It is ironic that although naturopathic doctors — or NDs, for short — undergo virtually the same training as medical doctors, their services had not been covered by insurance companies in New Hampshire.

Naturopathic doctors emphasize illness prevention and lifestyle guidance rather than pharmaceutical or surgical procedures in their practice. About 75 percent of health-care spending nationwide goes to treating chronic diseases, particularly those caused by diet and stress, such as obesity, heart disease and diabetes.

Here on the Seacoast, two naturopathic doctors — Dr. Robyn Giard and Dr. Krista Delaplane of Starry Brook Natural Medicine in Exeter — display some overlapping talents and other divergent skills, fulfilling the promise of naturopathy by identifying and treating the causes of illness, rather than erasing these important clues with drugs. And by doing so, they are improving their patients’ health.

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