Naturopathic Doctors (Qualifications)
Naturopathic Doctors must complete at least 3 years of undergraduate study at a recognized University, with certain pre-requisites in subjects such as biology, chemistry, biochemistry and psychology, in order to be admitted to a Naturopathic College. They must then complete 4 years of study at an accredited Naturopathic College (in Toronto, Vancouver or the U.S.), which includes basic medical sciences, naturopathic therapies and extensive clinical experience. After graduation, a potential N.D. must write a series of board examinations (NPLEX), one set which are written by all North American candidates, as well as a specific series of examinations for the jurisdiction that they wish to practice in (i.e. Ontario). After passing these examinations, an N.D. is eligible to obtain a license to practice in their chosen jurisdiction. Once in practice, each N.D. in Ontario must perform a certain number of Continuing Education credits in specific disciplines every three years.
The Naturopathy Act was proclaimed on July 1, 2015, bringing Naturopathic Doctors under more current regulation. This means that Naturopathic Doctors are now one of the regulated health professions in Ontario governed under the “Regulated Health Professions Act (RHPA).” Other regulated professions include Medical Doctors, Dentists, Nurses, Chiropractors, Massage Therapists and Optometrists, to name a few. The RHPA establishes a “College” to regulate each profession. Ontario’s Naturopathic Doctors are now regulated by the new College of Naturopaths of Ontario (CONO). CONO is in charge of writing and enforcing the policies and procedures that govern naturopathic practice in Ontario. Their mandate involves protection of the public interest and ensuring that Ontarians have access to quality naturopathic care.
Only licensed N.D.’s who are members of CONO are allowed to use the “Dr.” title in front of their name, followed by one of the titles “N.D.” or “Naturopathic Doctor.”
Massage Therapy (Qualifications)
The practice of Massage Therapy, as defined under the Massage Therapy Act, is “the assessment of the soft tissue and joints of the body, and the treatment and prevention of physical dysfunction and pain of the soft tissues and joints by manipulation to develop, maintain, rehabilitate or augment physical function or relieve pain.”
Massage Therapists must have completed a 2-3 year diploma program from a recognized Massage Therapy school. Anatomy, physiology, pathology, clinical assessment, kinesiology, nutrition, public health and ethics and professionalism comprise most of the 2300 hours of academic study. Extensive Clinical training is also included in the course. Potential Massage Therapists must then pass provincial licensing examinations.
Massage Therapy is one of the regulated health professions in Ontario governed under the “Regulated Health Professions Act (RHPA).” Other regulated professions include Medical Doctors, Naturopathic Doctors, Dentists, Veterinarians, Nurses and Optometrists. The RHPA establishes a “College” to regulate each profession.
In Ontario, Massage Therapy is regulated by the College of Massage Therapists of Ontario (CMTO). The CMTO ensures quality control and standards of practise through provincial examinations and ongoing reviews of members. Registered Massage Therapists must participate in a Quality Assurance Program that assists them in the maintenance of high professional standards and quality care of their clients.
Only members of the College of Massage Therapists of Ontario are permitted to use the title Massage Therapist or Registered Massage Therapist and use the letters M.T. or R.M.T. with their names.
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