How do you find a good naturopath?
It all depends on what you’re looking for in a naturopath.
Like finding a dentist, massage therapist or a GP – each practitioner is different.
While recommendations from friends is a good place to start; it’s can help to ask more about their experience, what they found most useful and how it’s changed their health.
Useful questions to ask when looking for a naturopath
This information may be available on the practitioner’s website, if not consider inquiring before booking.
- How long have you been practicing?
- What/where did you study? If you don’t know about specific courses, the following tips might be useful:
- Diplomas, advanced diplomas or degrees in applied science, implies a minimum of three or four year full-time study, including core science and naturopathic (or specialist modality) subjects.
- The first Australian Diploma of Applied Science graduated around 1990 and Bachelor of Health Science degree courses commenced after 2000.
- A string of diplomas in individual subjects implies short courses, not always a comprehensive education.
- Do you belong to a professional association?
- Do they have public liability and indemnity insurance?
- Ask if the practitioner has any experience working with your specific condition (if serious or rare).
- What is the consultation fee, what does this cover and are there any additional costs (such as tests, supplements etc)? Look for a website that’s transparent about fees, so there are no surprises!
- What happens in a consultation?
- What modalities do they use?
- A note on the 2019 private health insurance reforms. If the practitioner is a naturopath or western herbalist offering HICAPS, or rebates after 1 April 2019, ask to see their accreditation for the modality you are claiming with your health insurer.
Are testimonials allowed?
Did you know that naturopaths, along with doctors and other health practitioners, are not allowed to publish testimonials (recommendations and reviews) from clients? Consumer legislation and guidelines (Health Complaints Commission, Australian Health Practitioner Regulation Agency and other state bodies) covers all health practitioners, including non-regulated professions such as naturopathy, herbal medicine and nutrition.
If a naturopath is up to date with the rules and regulations, there won’t be any testimonials for their health services on their site.
More about Gill Stannard
- Practicing continuously for over 27 years.
- Graduated from Southern School of Natural Therapies (Melbourne) in 1991 with a state of the art Diploma of Applied Science in Naturopathy. The course was 4 years full time and included a strong core of science, medical and naturopathic subjects.
- Fellow of NHAA. PLI insurance and current first aid certification are mandatory membership requirements. The NHAA only confers fellowships on members who have been practicing for a substantial amount of time and have made an outstanding contribution to the profession.
- See website for consultation fees, which are prepaid at the time of booking.
- No additional costs for distance consultations (by Skype, phone etc)
- Sydney in-person consultations, may be prescribed an individualised herbal formula.
- Supplements may be recommended but are kept to a minimum.
- In the extended, initial consultation (up to 75 minutes) a full health history, review of body systems, diet and lifestyle information is discussed, to fully understand how your body functions. This forms the basis of your health analysis and treatment plan. Ongoing consultations may be required, depending on your health. As our lives are often complex, so too are our health needs.
- With extensive experience helping people feel better, Gill believes that lifestyle ultimately plays the most important role in good health. Herbs and supplements (in moderation) may help this process. Working with thousands of people over the decades means her approach is realistic and practical, and can suit those living busy and complex
More about Gill