Australia’s oldest complementary medicine association, NHAA, has renewed its bid for government regulation for the Naturopathic and Herbal Medicine professions.
The NHAA has long been, and continues to be, strongly in favour of regulation of the profession of naturopathy and herbal medicine through statutory registration. “There must be confidence when someone calls themselves a naturopath or herbal medicine practitioner” said Leah Hechtman, President of the NHAA, “education and licensing requirements exist that not only protect the public but maintain the integrity of our ethical practitioners.”
“That level of protection is something we take for granted in many health professions like doctors and dentists, but also Chinese Medicine Practitioners. Now naturopaths and herbal medicine practitioners are renewing their call for the same type of government controlled checks and balances through statutory regulation.” Currently the member associations take on the role of not only providing member support and services, but also that of quasi regulators. There are many associations with differing standards and requirements and Australia’s most respected practitioners are calling for a national licencing board. Hechtman said, “The NHAA already ensures its standards are in line with those set by the Australian Health Practitioner Regulation Agency (AHPRA) as one of many actions they hope will allow this to happen sooner than later.”
The NHAA has been setting standards for the industry since 1920 and continues to work with various government and educational bodies to assist training providers by providing a standard for curriculum design. Compulsory registration of practitioners will help ensure these high standards are maintained.