Arlington, VA - The American Association of Naturopathic Physicians (AANP) awarded Delegate Susan Krebs, of Carroll County, with their Legislative Champion Award at their annual legislative conference in recognition of her efforts over the past three years to gain licensure for Naturopathic Doctors in Maryland.
"I am honored to receive this award in recognition of my efforts to bring more options of health care providers to Marylanders. As our state searches for solutions to decrease healthcare spending and to prevent the growing incidence of chronic disease, the field of naturopathic medicine is committed to focusing on disease prevention and use of science-based natural therapies to stimulate healing. Using diet and lifestyle changes as the basis of care, naturopathic doctors empower patients to restore health and prevent disease." said Delegate Krebs.
The legislation, passed this year, will establish a licensee to practice "naturopathic medicine" within Maryland and establishes the Naturopathic Medicine Advisory Committee within the Maryland State Board of Physicians. Delegate Krebs partnered with Delegate Nathaniel Oaks (Baltimore) and Senator Catherine Pugh (Baltimore) in shepherding the bill through the legislative process. They were all honored together.
Delegates Krebs and Oaks receiving their award
"Naturopathic medicine" is a wellness based approach that focuses on the prevention, diagnosis, and treatment of human health conditions, injury, and disease using patient education, naturopathic therapies, and therapeutic substances recognized by the Council of Naturopathic Medical Education.
Naturopathic doctors teach their patients to use diet, exercise, lifestyle changes, and natural therapies to enhance their body's ability to ward off and combat disease. Naturopathic doctors craft treatment plans that blend modern medical science and traditional natural medical approaches to treat disease and restore health. A naturopathic doctor may not prescribe, dispense, or administer any prescription drug or perform surgical procedures.
By allowing for the licensure of naturopathic doctors, Maryland is providing more choices that can be trusted. This law brings Maryland in line with seventeen states, the District of Columbia, and five Canadian provinces that currently license naturopathic doctors. Currently, there are approximately 4,800 naturopathic practitioners nationwide, and 26 naturopathic doctors who practice in Maryland.
"Our country leads the world in per capita health expenditures, yet is only middle of the road in healthcare quality- the rate of obesity in the U.S. is staggering. The integrative approach to primary care, including Naturopathic Doctors, will transform treatment in our health care system and add options to patients for whole-health healing and increase access to safe, non-invasive and cost-effective healthcare for Marylanders," stated Krebs.
Delegate Krebs is the Deputy Minority Whip in the Maryland House of Delegates and a member of the Health and Government Operations Committee, where she has served for the last six years.