Ontario to give naturopaths prescription rights

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Polly B Polly B's picture

Sineed wrote:

In north America, people take far too many psychoactive drugs and painkillers.  We're substituting for something we need and aren't getting.

 

I was at my sons football game last week and someone mentioned that they had drank a little too much wine the night before and had a headached.  Every single one of the parents there had some sort of OTC painkiller with them.  "Oh, I have some tylenol in my purse" "Ibuprofen in the glovebox" "Motrin in the gear bag" etc.  I think we forget that these are painkillers too, and that we should read the directions and not take them for every little ache and pain.  And really, the motrin was in the kids gear bag?

Unionist

N.R.KISSED wrote:

Yes and Hydroelectric damns are built and Oil wells are dug as indigenous people are dispossed of their ancestral lands.

Umm, listen my friend, when I say that nuclear bombs work, I'm not suggesting they should be used. Try to focus please.

 

Polly B Polly B's picture

Lord Palmerston wrote:

Polly B, I still don't see your point about insisting that I state whether or not I consider every single form of traditional or folk medicine quackery.

 

Sorry LP, not insisting, I was interested in your opinion.  You seemed so determined on the quackery issue I wondered if it extended to all types of healing or just bottled meds or whatever.  Don't answer if it bugs you.

 

Edited to add:  I see you corrected the post about traditional medicine "in and of itself is NOT quackery".  That makes more sense and I wouldn't have kept asking if I had known that is what you meant.

RevolutionPlease RevolutionPlease's picture

Unionist wrote:

N.R.KISSED wrote:

Yes and Hydroelectric damns are built and Oil wells are dug as indigenous people are dispossed of their ancestral lands.

Umm, listen my friend, when I say that nuclear bombs work, I'm not suggesting they should be used. Try to focus please.

 

 

Perhaps, you need the focus.

Unionist

RevolutionPlease wrote:

Perhaps, you need the focus.

No. This discussion was just fine, until NRK showed up accusing LP of "cultural imperialism" and insinuating that I support science which destroys indigenous people's livelihood. These are indeed desperate comments, not typical of NRK at all. If you support those comments, say so. Otherwise, we can play kiddie games: No, YOU need the focus, haw haw.

 

RevolutionPlease RevolutionPlease's picture

Unionist, I will respect and read commentary.  I won't play ad hominem unless I see it played.

RevolutionPlease RevolutionPlease's picture

It's the only way to deal wth folks like you.

RevolutionPlease RevolutionPlease's picture

Fucking wish I didn't have to work....

Doug

G. Pie wrote:

  It's ludicrous to suggest you need a medical degree to safely give an injection. 

 

Is it though? Just about anyone can give an injection - but are they giving the right injection? That takes diagnostic skill. Are they injecting the right amount and have they ensured compatibility with other substances the patient is taking and other conditions they have? That takes pharmaocologic knowledge.

Sineed

Doug wrote:

G. Pie wrote:

  It's ludicrous to suggest you need a medical degree to safely give an injection. 

 

Is it though? Just about anyone can give an injection - but are they giving the right injection? That takes diagnostic skill. Are they injecting the right amount and have they ensured compatibility with other substances the patient is taking and other conditions they have? That takes pharmaocologic knowledge.

That's a good point, Doug - in discussions around giving pharmacists, nurses, etc expanded responsibilities, there's been all sorts of disagreement around just how many qualifications health care providers need, not because of what usually happens, but because of the rare catastrophic things that can happen.  And if you're inoculating lots of people, these rare events will come up.  

Wow!  Speaking of unlikely events, the CBC news came on, and there's a deer in downtown Toronto, just off Dundas West, east of Chinatown.  It's looking positive - the deer has settled into someone's garden, and Animal Services are waiting for rush hour to clear before they attempt to remove it.

 

N.R.KISSED

Unionist wrote:

RevolutionPlease wrote:

Perhaps, you need the focus.

No. This discussion was just fine, until NRK showed up accusing LP of "cultural imperialism" and insinuating that I support science which destroys indigenous people's livelihood. These are indeed desperate comments, not typical of NRK at all. If you support those comments, say so. Otherwise, we can play kiddie games: No, YOU need the focus, haw haw.

I am not insinuating that you support science that destroys indigenous people's lives. What I was attempting to do with my brief missives was to once again challenge the dominant narrative of rational modernity and its attendent assumptions. Western medicine and its claims are inextricably embedded in such a narrative and this narrative is also an expression of western cultural imperialism and dominance.

I agree that modern medicine is universal however this is not due to a happy coincidence nor is western medicine free of the values and assumptions or historical context from which it is born; it includes specific ways in which we view both the body and healthy living. It is based based on certain epistemological and cosmological systems that seek to dismiss the traditional or indigenous knowledge of other cultures. I find it problematic that traditional chinese medicine, ayuvedic or indigenous healings methods of a variety of groups are dismissed by those who really know little of their basis, epistemology or cosmology. It would be disingenous to deny that the rationalist project of modernity has not had its consequence on those that hold marginalized social positions and whose beliefs and lifestyles are the victims of such cultural intellectual imperialism.That is what I was attempting to point out in reference to the modernizing projects and unquestionable force of scientific progress, such beliefs have dark consequences and billions of people have and continue to be displaces as a result of the rationalist project of modernity.

It would be equally untrue to claim that the greatest threat to indigenous people has been lack of access to westerm medicine when quite clearly it has been the result in a dominant cultural narrative that decides that their lifestyles and knowledge are unneccessary, unproductive or superfluous. It is the assumption of superiority that is embedded in western rationalism that has justified the displacement of peoples and the appropriation of their land.

It is also worthwhile on the subject of health that we acknowldge as well that perhaps the greatest threat to impoverished people on this planet is not lack of access to western medicine but a lack of access to clean water and nutritious food and this goes to the heart of the assumptions of western constructions of health and medicine.

 

Sineed

I would argue, however, that "western" medicine is not western, but a common heritage of humanity.  Many cultures contributed to modern medicine. 

To reject modern medicine as "cultural imperialism" is not only wrong, but also it's throwing the baby out with the bathwater.  We can all agree that the crimes of western culture are legion.  But scientific advances are outside culture and as such culturally exclude nobody, and can benefit everybody - unless you think that gravity is a western concept because it was first explained mathematically by a European (I wouldn't say Newton "discovered" gravity because that's cultural imperialism, IMO).

A consequence of cultural imperialism is the denial of effective health care to much of the world's population.  Another consequence of cultural imperialism is the focus of scientific investigation - for example, I believe that we probably would have more effective treatments or maybe a cure for malaria, if more rich people got it.  But science is, itself, acultural, and is studied worldwide.  This is not cultural imperialism - it's emancipation.

N.R.KISSED

Sineed wrote:

I would argue, however, that "western" medicine is not western, but a common heritage of humanity.  Many cultures contributed to modern medicine. 

To reject modern medicine as "cultural imperialism" is not only wrong, but also it's throwing the baby out with the bathwater.  We can all agree that the crimes of western culture are legion.  But scientific advances are outside culture and as such culturally exclude nobody, and can benefit everybody - unless you think that gravity is a western concept because it was first explained mathematically by a European (I wouldn't say Newton "discovered" gravity because that's cultural imperialism, IMO).

A consequence of cultural imperialism is the denial of effective health care to much of the world's population.  Another consequence of cultural imperialism is the focus of scientific investigation - for example, I believe that we probably would have more effective treatments or maybe a cure for malaria, if more rich people got it.  But science is, itself, acultural, and is studied worldwide.  This is not cultural imperialism - it's emancipation.

I didn't say that the Western model of medicine was cultural imperialism. What I was saying that statiing that the Western model of medicine is the only legitimate way to understand health and healing and all other approaches need to be attacked, dismissed and rejected because they do not adhere to western positivistic standards is cultural imperialism.

I am also stating that modern medicine  remains rooted in particularly western epistemology and cosmology that are not shared by indigenous and/or tradional systems. To reject tradional or indigenous knowledge based on western epistemology and cosmology is cultural imperialism. In the asme vein I disagree that science or medicine are culturally neutral instead I am arguing that they are deeply embedded in a particular western way of engaging with the world. I am also stating that the broader narrative surrounding the great project of modernity and progress has had extremely negative consequences. Those who suffer these consequences tend to be those that do not fit into the grand scheme of modernity and as a result their lifestyles are marginalized and they are displaced. The anthropologist Wade Davis who recently did a Massey lecture series on this very topic. There is also another thread on rabble in which Arundhati Roy talks about the displacement of indigenous rural populations in India in the name of modernity.

Clearly everyone does not benefit from scientific knowledge or the myth of progress, knowledge, power and techonolgy are constantly utilized to margilize and control others.

What does this have to do with Health? What I find frustrating and disconcering about these threads is not just the unfounded scientific triumpalism but the fact that constantly the "Alternative" booger man gets raised while avoiding any room for a critique of the western model of health and healing. Western medicine is as profit based and market oriented as it is science or evidence based, fraud and quackery is widespread and legitimized by the holy peer reviewed journals. What frequently gets lost in the privileging of medical knowledge and attacks on the alternative is perhaps the most obvious alternative, the social determinants of health. The overall health of not only this country but the world would be vastly improved if people had access to clean water, nutritious food, safe housing, freedom from man made toxins in our air ,food adn water. As well as workplaces free of abuse harrasment and exploitation.

I would also like to be clear that I am not engaging in a simple binary Western medicine bad vs Traditional/indigenous knowledge good. The western medical approach has definitely helped many people but due to some of its flaws it has also harmed people.

Unionist

Maybe if you more clearly distinguished between the technological advances, on the one hand, and the social order that misuses and abuses these technological advances, on the other, we could find some ground for agreement, or at least discourse. But your posts seem to me like shifting sands. Sineed's baby and bathwater analogy is dead on. Luddites blamed the machines, while socialists targeted the mode of ownership of the means of production.

remind remind's picture

 a Dr here  is also  a certified acupuncturist, while another Dr I know is a certified hypnotherapist,  another a certified naturopath too, and still another also has an advanced degree in nutrition.....

Nurses who are trained and certified to give needles/shots, are all emergency trained, on top of their pharma training.....

Sineed

The problem really is the misuse of science and not science itself.  The ability to engage in rational thought is not culturally based but common to all humanity.

I have had a similar argument with some (mercifully, few) feminists, who feel that modern science is based on male patterns of cognition, and that women's cognitive processes are somehow inherently different - an argument that makes me wanna hurl, frankly.  The next woman who tells me that science is inherently patriarchal, and women think more "organically" is going to have something organic all over the tops of her shoes.

It's the power structures in our world that are the problem.  The science, and the medicine leading from it, is not biased.

 

N.R.KISSED

Science and medicine cannot be separated from culture. What is considered valid research, how it is researched, how the research is disseminated is all influenced by the nature of capitalist economies. A significant portion of medical research is funded by pharmaceutical companies and they require that their investments will pay off. The nature of health and healing is determined by cultural worldview and in western medicine this view is reductionist, isolationist and mechanistic. A body is viewed as an object that things happen to and healing occurs when something is done to this body. Even the body is generally broken into separate mechanisms without full attention to interactions. Not a great deal of attention is given to various environmental toxins, the impact of nutrients or environmental stressors. physiology is often treated as something separate from the broader field within which we exist.

Are you also claiming that medicine is not patriarchal?

Lord Palmerston

[url=http://www.quackwatch.org/01QuackeryRelatedTopics/Naturopathy/licensure.... Naturopaths Should Not Be Licensed[/url]

 

Quote:
Since treatment by incompetent practitioners can cause great damage, health professions should be held to very high standards. To be considered a health profession, an occupational group should be able to demonstrate an objective, scientific, and ethical basis. Naturopathy fails to meet this standard. I believe that it is dangerous and that no amount of regulation can control the danger. Moreover, as noted by William T. Jarvis, Ph.D., past-president of the National Council Against Health Fraud:

The difference between more and less educated naturopaths is . . . . like comparing more and less educated witch doctors. It could actually be argued that less schooled naturopaths are safer because they may have a smaller bag of tricks and, because they don't consider themselves "primary health physicians," they are more apt to refer patients to M.D.'s for additional care.

Lord Palmerston

Hamilton Spectator:[url=http://healthwatcher.net/quackerywatch/Naturopathy/Margaritis/Naturopath... shun vaccine[/url]

And a [url=http://www.thespec.com/Opinions/article/665512]response[/url]

Quote:
I frequently read The Spectator to keep abreast of ongoing public affairs. I trust it takes prudent care to ensure its facts are in order and its sources are honest.

It is with this in mind I must take issue with Susan Clairmont's column, Naturopaths shun vaccine, say fever is good (Oct. 31.) While I do support having an open forum for opinions, I believe articles should not be open to subjective validation; this information should be reserved for facts, and not pseudo-science and pseudo-medicine.

This article gives a voice to naturopath Laura Margaritis, who is erroneously urging people to disregard the H1N1 vaccine in favour of "natural" methods.

In case you were not aware, Naturopathy and its methods (herbology, homeopathy, etc.) have consistently failed standard double-blind experiments, and foists its claims solely on the idea that there is a "grand conspiracy" from public media forums such as yourselves to keep "the truth" about herbs and all-natural methods from entering the pharmaceutical mainstream.

Lord Palmerston

[url=http://www.randi.org/site/index.php/swift-blog/786-fake-doctors-with-rea... Doctors With Real Drugs[/url]

Quote:
As Skeptic North's resident science-based pharmacist reported week, the Ontario legislature is poised to grant prescription rights to naturopaths. I think I hardly need explain to Swift readers how dangerous this is, but please indulge me in a little exposition.

Bill 179 was introduced in the spring of this year as a way of expanding scope-of-practice for health care professionals in Ontario, including (but not limited to) nurses, midwives, pharmacists and radiologists. Such an expansion was recommended by the Health Professions Regulatory Advisory Council (HPRAC), and this organization also recommended further that naturopaths be granted prescription rights. The Bill would have aimed to do this by amending a previous act of the Ontario Legislature, the Naturopathy Act, 2007. In this act, a "naturopath" is defined simply as someone who graduated from one of the two naturopathic colleges in Canada (neither of which are affiliated with any Canadian accredited university, and have extensive courses in homeopathy, Traditional Chinese Medicine, and colonic hydrotherapy). After the first reading of the bill, the HPRAC's recommendation for naturopath prescribing rights were soundly rejected. Before the bill's second-reading, a coalition of naturopathic associations organized a write-in campaign to put the naturopathic amendment back into the bill, and they were successful on Oct 20.

The bill itself has gone through two readings so far, and the third and final reading has been ordered (but not yet scheduled). The current session of the Ontario legislature will likely be over in less than a month, so the bill will likely be presented for it's third reading, at which point it will be enshrined in law. Then naturopaths, homeopaths, acupuncturists, and Reiki practitioners will have the right to prescribe anti-inflammatory, anti-biotic, and narcotic (just to name a few) medications.

Supporters of the naturopath expansion have framed this issue in two disingenuous and/or problematic narratives: one of freedom, and one of access. The former is being presented as allowing Ontario citizens the freedom to seek out alternative health modalities and freedom for naturopaths to prescribe medications that they need to; the latter as a way of dealing with the doctor shortage. Both of these arguments are deeply concerning, because a) there is no law in Canada that prohibits citizens from seeking alternative treatments, and b) if a person who requires legitimate medical attention and feels they are unable to see a doctor in a timely manner, they are far more likely to seek out alternative avenues, potentially finding a dangerously-untrained and under-qualified naturopath.

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