Frequently Asked Questions

Licensing of Naturopathic Doctors

Where is naturopathic medicine licensed? 
Currently, 15 states, the District of Columbia, and the United States territories of Puerto Rico and theVirgin Islands have licensing laws for naturopathic doctors. In these states, naturopathic doctors are required to graduate from an accredited four-year residential naturopathic medical school and pass an extensive postdoctoral board examination (NPLEX) in order to receive a license. For information about the Naturopathic Physicians Licensing Examination Board (NPLEX) and the North American Board of Naturopathic Examiners (NABNE), please see the Education page at

What is the difference between Naturopathic Doctors and other alternative practitioners?
A licensed naturopathic physician (ND) attends a four-year, graduate-level naturopathic medical school and is educated in all of the same basic sciences as an MD, but also studies holistic and nontoxic approaches to therapy with a strong emphasis on disease prevention and optimizing wellness. In addition to a standard medical curriculum, the naturopathic physician is required to complete four years of training in clinical nutrition, acupuncture, homeopathic medicine, botanical medicine, psychology, and counseling (to encourage people to make lifestyle changes in support of their personal health). A naturopathic physician takes rigorous professional board exams so that he or she may be licensed by a state or jurisdiction as a primary care general practice physician. Please see the AANMC’s Professional Competency Profile for more information.
Additional information on naturopathic schools can be found on the American Association of Naturopathic Medical Colleges web site.

What can I do to help with licensure of Naturopathic Doctors?
Spread the message to as many New Yorkers as possible. Watch this video about licensing of Naturopathic Doctors:

Where can I learn more about naturopathic Medicine?