Tell Governor Brown: Don't Endanger Oregon's Health - VETO SB 856

The Oregon Legislature has just made the terrible mistake of granting naturopaths sweeping new powers to make life and death decisions for Oregonians. Unless vetoed by Gov. Kate Brown, Senate Bill 856 will give naturopaths the same authority as medical doctors (MDs) and osteopathic doctors (DOs) to make important medical and legal judgments for people’s lives, despite lacking the basic qualifications to do so.

Naturopathic “medical schools” are not part of the mainstream health care education system and students are taught pseudoscience like homeopathy and “detoxification.” Unlike MDs and DOs, naturopaths do not do residencies upon graduation, but go straight into practice. Most naturopathic grads have never practiced in a hospital or specialty clinic.

Yet SB 856 would give NDs the authority to make critical decisions on serious health matters, such as the authority to:

  • Decide if seriously ill patients are eligible for hospice care, or make end-of-life decisions for terminally ill patients who are not competent to consent to treatment;
  • Weigh in on whether mentally ill persons should be involuntarily committed and decide what treatment they should receive;
  • Decide whether a child receives special education services or a veteran is disabled;
  • Make the call as to whether a food worker is putting the public at risk for contagious diseases;
  • Be employed by the state to provide medical care to vulnerable populations, like prisoners, juvenile detainees and addicts;
  • Order physical or chemical restraint, or psychotropic medication, for elderly and disabled persons.

Naturopathic doctors (NDs) do not practice evidence-based medicine and offer the public a plethora of dubious diagnoses to be treated with a cornucopia of pseudoscientific remedies, including homeopathy, herbs and colonics. Studies show they do not even support vaccinations.

Oregon already gives NDs the most liberal scope of practice among the few states that license NDs. It allows them to practice as primary care physicians, even though their education and training is inferior to an MD and DO. It would be a mistake to put the public at further risk by giving NDs authority to make medical judgments they are not properly educated and trained to make.

With SB 856, the state would be effectively forcing substandard care upon vulnerable populations who don’t have the capacity to refuse. This bill must not be signed into law.

Tell Gov. Kate Brown to veto Senate Bill 856.

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  • Your Governor

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Don't Endanger Oregon's Health - VETO SB 856

Dear  [Decision Maker],

I write to urge you to veto Senate Bill 856, which would give naturopaths the same authority as medical doctors (MDs) and osteopathic doctors (DOs) to make important medical and legal judgments for people's lives, despite lacking the basic qualifications to do so.



With SB 856, the state would be effectively forcing substandard care upon vulnerable populations who don't have the capacity to refuse. This bill must not be signed into law, and I respectfully urge you to veto it.

Sincerely,
[Your Name]
[Your Address]
[City, State ZIP]