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Naturopathic Training and Careers

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Learn About Naturopathy Training and Schools

Naturopathic medicine takes a holistic approach to wellness, focusing on the body’s innate healing ability. Through naturopathy training, practitioners learn the same basic sciences as medical doctors as well as the key principles of naturopathic medicine, including non-toxic therapies, whole-person treatment strategies and proactive healing practices that help patients achieve greater wellness.

Today’s natural health and alternative medicine marketplace creates opportunity for naturopathic medicine practitioners and businesses. Learn more about this fascinating profession by reading the naturopathy training and career information below.

Career Overview

When they first meet with patients, naturopathic doctors (NDs) will spend significant time gathering information from patients on their health history, current conditions, genetic, environmental, spiritual and social makeup. Taking all of these health factors into consideration, the ND will devise a customized treatment strategy based on principles of naturopathy training.

Treatment plans might include homeopathic remedies, herbs, nutrition counseling and even psychological counseling to help clients overcome mental health issues preventing them from achieving wellness.

Learn about careers in homeopathy.

Training and Education

What You’ll Study in Naturopathic Medicine School

Naturopathy training classes will vary slightly from school to school. In general, though, you can expect course work at naturopathic schools to include the following:

  • Naturopathic theory and philosophy
  • Anatomy and organ systems
  • Biochemistry
  • Research and statistics
  • Botanical Medicine
  • Therapeutic manipulation
  • Clinical nutrition
  • Homeopathy
  • Clinical practicum

Average Length of Study

Training at naturopathic schools involves four years of graduate-level study and requires that students hold at least a four-year bachelor’s degree to apply. When you complete your naturopathy training, you will earn a Doctor of Naturopathic Medicine degree (ND) and will be eligible for state licensure.

Average Tuition

Tuition for naturopathy training is approximately $30,000 per year for full-time enrollment. Accredited naturopathic schools typically offer financial aid, scholarships, and other assistance to help students cover tuition costs.

Naturopathic Medicine Certification

Earning board certification as a naturopathic doctor demonstrates that you meet the highest levels of proficiency and competency in your profession. You can earn Doctor Licensure through the North American Board of Naturopathic Examiners (NABNE), which requires candidates to graduate from an accredited naturopathic medical school and pass rigorous national board exams.

Approximately one-third of all states currently regulate naturopathic practice, and each year, more states are developing legislation that enables their ND’s to become licensed.

Career Outlook

According to WebMD, Americans are continuing to turn to complementary and alternative medicine. And CNN reports that about a third of us are now using alternative methods to supplement the care we get from our doctors. That means that careers in naturopathic medicine can anticipate healthy growth. While the demand for alternative medicine includes a broad range of holistic health occupations, naturopathic doctors should enjoy strong career prospects with the public’s interest in alternative medicine.

Our ever-increasing demand for preventive care to reduce the risk of contracting disease or chronic illness is one of the main catalysts for the projected job growth in the alternative medicine profession.

Naturopathic Medicine Salary

Naturopathic physicians made a median salary of $82,420 in 2020, according to O*Net, which is a division of the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. Factors such as experience, location and employer type have the most impact on naturopathic salaries. Self-employed naturopathic doctors typically earn the highest salaries followed by those who work in private practice for a firm. Find salaries by state for these practitioners.

Acupuncturists and Healthcare Diagnosing or Treating Practitioners, All Other

National data

Median Salary: $82,420

Bottom 10%: $43,200

Top 10%: $160,990

Projected job growth: 4.7%

State data

State Median Salary Bottom 10% Top 10%
Alabama $77,010 $56,390 $132,270
Alaska $87,750 $57,550 $159,120
Arizona $66,330 $38,340 $114,990
Arkansas $60,570 $36,190 $109,490
California $72,210 $36,540 $154,570
Colorado $63,050 $39,800 $116,330
Connecticut $84,960 $57,190 $170,800
Delaware $88,330 $64,670 $105,340
District of Columbia N/A N/A N/A
Florida $59,370 $21,670 $106,900
Georgia $112,150 $69,690 $160,310
Hawaii $60,510 $31,840 $106,600
Idaho $84,280 $58,050 N/A
Illinois $62,380 $32,620 $114,660
Indiana $62,780 $34,040 $119,580
Iowa $73,910 $51,860 $118,660
Kansas $66,820 $53,450 $123,070
Kentucky $62,270 $48,400 $112,520
Louisiana N/A N/A N/A
Maine $73,580 $40,460 $115,980
Maryland $142,180 $94,970 $170,800
Massachusetts $76,040 $49,760 $128,670
Michigan $83,680 $47,500 N/A
Minnesota $72,200 $43,230 $128,280
Mississippi $68,780 $55,880 $111,390
Missouri $64,650 $46,700 $119,830
Montana $96,490 $55,870 $136,910
Nebraska $63,700 $47,390 $106,600
Nevada $75,790 $29,450 $179,450
New Hampshire $87,880 $53,390 N/A
New Jersey $84,880 $57,540 $169,410
New Mexico $67,010 $29,970 $103,910
New York $70,420 $42,700 $154,220
North Carolina $97,470 $58,070 $149,950
Ohio $84,360 $57,830 $138,220
Oklahoma $62,260 $33,640 $136,570
Oregon $85,940 $45,750 $128,510
Pennsylvania $76,530 $54,480 $128,930
Rhode Island $110,940 $57,800 $160,020
South Carolina $62,270 $52,900 $115,560
South Dakota $67,650 $52,710 $94,640
Tennessee $56,980 $38,930 $92,080
Texas $67,120 $27,700 $126,020
Utah $79,270 $53,760 $118,610
Vermont $75,520 $37,590 $136,760
Virginia $92,580 $60,200 $149,630
Washington $75,460 $41,810 $156,410
West Virginia $62,550 $53,110 $140,150
Wisconsin $69,510 $36,480 $115,890
Wyoming N/A N/A N/A

Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) 2020 median salary; projected job growth through 2030. Actual salaries vary depending on location, level of education, years of experience, work environment, and other factors. Salaries may differ even more for those who are self-employed or work part time.

Is a Naturopathic Medicine Career Right for You?

A career in naturopathic medicine requires a significant investment of time and money to complete the advanced naturopathy training and hands-on practice required to enter the profession. Exceptional analytical skills, a high level of compassion working with patients of all ages and backgrounds, and a long-term interest in contributing to the growth of naturopathic medicine are also essential to the job.

If you are interested in a naturopathic medicine career, take a closer look at naturopathic schools. Then choose the naturopathy training program that meets your personal and professional needs.

Sources: www.webmd.com/news/20110201/complementary-and-alternative-medicine-on-the-rise, www.cnn.com/2015/02/11/health/feat-alternative-medicine-study/