17 July 2021
We here at the WANP were disappointed, disheartened, and frustrated to read the recent news of a licensed naturopathic physician in California who has been arrested for allegedly selling fraudulent COVID-19 vaccination cards. While we will never fully understand the motivations of this particular doctor, we recognize the negative impact this has on the reputation of our profession as a whole.
To borrow language from our colleagues at the American Association of Naturopathic Physicians (AANP): "As medical professionals, licensed naturopathic physicians are held to the highest treatment and ethical standards of patient-centered care. As an organization, community, and profession, we take seriously the alleged actions for which this doctor is accused. Putting the health of patients and others at risk by fraudulently presenting any treatment as a replacement for authorized vaccines, and falsifying documents is both illegal and unethical."
We want to be very clear that the WANP does not condone any behavior that is fraudulent, misleading, or illegal, as this type of behavior does not serve our patients, the public, or our profession. In fact, it has the potential to do great harm, which is in direct opposition to both our Hippocratic and naturopathic oaths and to our philosophy as naturopathic physicians.
We at the WANP affirm the recommendations of our local health departments, as well as our commitment to prioritize the health and safety of our patients and the public in our designation as primary care physicians in Washington State. We take our responsibility as primary care physicians very seriously and are honored to serve our patients and our state in this capacity.
We acknowledge that one piece of serving our patients in this primary care role is providing accurate and unbiased information on available immunizations and administering those immunizations (or arranging for such administration) to patients who desire them.
We also want to note that the vast majority of naturopathic physicians are practicing excellent medicine, and that many in our community have participated in the mass vaccination and education efforts aimed at curbing this global pandemic. We see you and appreciate you.
Thank you for being a part of our community. We're grateful for you