We are so excited to announce that the DHANP application process is now open! Here are a few words from our president, Dr. Lisa Warner Amerine, on why she is involved with HANP.
Greetings to all of you who support the HANP! We hope that 2017 has treated you well so far. The past 15 months have been full of hard work and we are excited to share with you some of the highlights and more importantly, tell you what is to come in 2017.
First of all we want to thank all of you who have supported us as the board has worked very hard to bring the HANP back to a thriving speciality organization. As an organization our goal is to promote excellence in the practice of homeopathy. In these past 15 months we have worked many hours to restore a solid foundation so we can accomplish our goals.
Our first step has been to bring the Diplomate of HANP (DHANP) credentialing process back to the HANP from the Council for Homeopathic Certification. We have spent the year detailing out the exact steps that are required to gain diplomate status of homeopathy within the naturopathic profession. This will allow us to establish and uphold specialist standards and to provide quality homeopathic education.
Towards this end, the HANP board came together in Colorado at the end of February to work on this process. Specifically, we finished the testing competencies, developed the outline for HANP Continuing Education, and reached out to established teachers to provide further educational offerings.
Next, we will recruit new and support existing DHANPs as well as expand our membership. To accomplish this we are reaching out to students to establish a presence at all of the naturopathic schools, connecting with new NDs, and developing comprehensive continuing education. Please visit HANP.net to see the newest changes to the website, the application to become a DHANP, and our continuing education offerings as they become available.
An ongoing objective is to build alliances with other professional homeopathic organizations. In April, many of the HANP board members will be attending/teaching at the Joint Homeopathic Conference in Atlanta. The HANP board is in ongoing conversation with the American Institute of Homeopathy to support each other’s efforts. The North American Society of Homeopaths and the HANP are pursuing ways in which we can work together.
We are excited to highlight some new membership benefits. We are securing discounts on homeopathic software, books and supplies for the HANP community. Current and future benefits can be found at HANP.net.
It is an exciting time to be a part of the HANP. Please take a moment to renew your membership online. Thank you in advance for your support. Please reach out to us if you feel inspired by our mission and want to play an active role in its manifestation.
Lisa Amerine, ND, DHANP, President
Gregory Pais, ND, DHANP, Vice President
Ian Luepker, ND, DHANP, Treasurer
Autumn Louise Schaefer, CCH, Secretary
Eli Camp, ND, DHANP
Jamie Oskin, ND
Eric Udell, ND
Our mission is to promote excellence in the practice of homeopathy among naturopathic physicians. We establish and uphold specialist standards, provide education and mentorship, and are committed to protect and preserve homeopathy as a core therapeutic modality within the naturopathic profession.
Hello and we hope you are all well. There are a lot of great things happening in the HANP this year! Our goals this year for the HANP are to further our excellence and inspire Naturopathic Doctors and students to join our team and recreate a strong specialty organization with in Naturopathic Medicine.
As many of you know, 2015 ended with our board evaluating and updating our by-laws. There were many minor changes that brought the by-laws into the 21st century and a few by-laws that were sent out to voting members that requested change. Our By-laws are available on our website for you all to review. We spent many hours combing through every line to make sure that we are in 100% compliance with Oregon State Law.
From the re-evaluation of our by-laws came the redefining and clarification of our mission statement. We want the HANP purpose to be clear, something that can guide us as well as future generations of DHANP’s on what direction this organization is to go. Our mission statement is a compass for us to use.
“Our mission is to promote excellence in the practice of homeopathy among naturopathic physicians. We establish and uphold specialist standards, provide education and mentorship, and are committed to protect and preserve homeopathy as a core therapeutic modality within the naturopathic profession.”. We welcome you all to join us in this endeavor.
Your HANP board is changing and growing and every board member has a passion for homeopathy that will propel this organization to great success. I encourage you to click on our Board of Directors Link to meet them. After seven great years of leadership by the HANP president, Dr. Ian Leupker has chosen to turn over his reign and take a different role with in the HANP board acting as the treasurer. Filling Dr. Leupker’s footsteps as president is Dr. Lisa Amerine, a HANP board member since 2013. Other officers include our secretary, Autumn Louise Schafer and last our Vice President Dr. Gregory Pace. Per our current by-laws, we have 11 seats open for our Board of Directors. As of the end of 2015 we would like to acknowledge Dr. Eric Udell, Dr. Jamie Oskin and Dr. Eli Camp for joining the HANP board and contributing many hours thus far to make our vision a reality.
The last big change of 2016 is the pause of the Simillimum Journal. For several years the HANP has published the Simillimum Journal and has been a big draw to the HANP. 2016 is about reestablishing the foundation of homeopathy with in Naturopathic Medicine. When we publish the Simillimum we want it to be, as has been in years past, a top notch journal. This year as we re-define the organization we voted to pause the publication of this journal and focus on the health of the organization as a whole so we can better serve the community. When the Simillimum returns it will be stronger and better than ever.
It is a huge honor for me to write to you and share our changes of 2016. Please know that we are here to serve you, the naturopathic and homeopathic community and we value your thoughts, comments, questions and concerns.
Lisa Amerine, ND, DHANP
by Lisa Amerine, ND, DHANP
In the spring of 2015 it was announced by the FDA that they wanted to investigate Homeopathic product regulations in particular the labeling of Homeopathic Products. On April 20th and 21st there was a two day public hearing that was designed for the FDA to hear pros and cons about the current regulatory framework homeopathic in place for homeopathy. There were 8 primary questions the FDA commissioners asked to gain a better understanding of homeopathy and the public’s perception of homeopathy. The questions asked were the following:
- What are consumer and health care provider attitudes towards human drug and biological products labeled as homeopathic?
- What data sources can be identified or shared with FDA so that the Agency can better assess the risks and benefits of homeopathic drug products (HDPs)?
- Are the current enforcement policies under the CPG appropriate to protect and promote public health in light of the tremendous growth in the HDP market? Are there alternatives to the current enforcement policies of the CPG that would inform FDA’s regulatory oversight of drugs labeled as homeopathic? If so, please explain.
- Are there areas of the current CPG that could benefit from additional clarity? If so, please explain.
- Is there information regarding the regulation of HDPs in other countries that could inform FDA’s thinking in this area?
- A large majority of human drug products labeled as homeopathic are marketed as OTC drugs. These products are available for a wide variety of indications, and many of these indications have never been considered for OTC use under a formal regulatory process. What would be an appropriate regulatory process for evaluating such indications for OTC use?
- Given the wide range of indications on drug products labeled as homeopathic and available OTC, what processes do companies currently use to evaluate whether such products, including their indications for use, are appropriate for marketing as an OTC drug?
- Do consumers and health care providers have adequate information to make informed decisions about drug products labeled as homeopathic? If not, what information, including, for example, information in labeling, would allow consumers and health care providers to be better informed about products labeled as homeopathic?
To read the actual transcripts or to view the recorded video of the event please visit: http://www.fda.gov/drugs/newsevents/ucm430539.htm
The questions were simple and the FDA commissioner team was very interested in the answers given. The panel was very respectful towards our profession and asked very thoughtful and pertinent questions. There were approximately 170 people in attendance, 8 FDA commissioners and cameras to provide a live webcam for anyone who chose to listen. The professionalism of our profession was top notch and exactly what I would want it to be at such an event. The majority of the speakers were well prepared, incredibly professional and spoke highly of homeopathy. From my perspective as a speaker at this hearing, never once did I feel my fellow colleagues undermined or condescended by questions asked.
I was however, taken by surprise the media’s response. What the media reported versus what was actually talked about in this hearing were two different things. The media painted a picture that the FDA was out to kill off homeopathy, shut it down and try to once and for all put an end to such medicine. It is an interesting emotion when it is your comments that are twisted or taken out of context from the media. The media’s reports left the general public confused, fearful and angry. The unfortunate part to this is the public is upset and standing up against a conversation that is not even remotely accurate.
The goal of the FDA is to keep people safe, limit confusion and make sure the manufacturers are doing follows regulations. There is a lot of products on the market that will label themselves as “homeopathic” when in reality they are a supplement hiding under a few homeopathic remedies so they can make a different type of claim. Even worse there are products on the market that are labeled as “Homeopathic” that have never been homeopathic medications such as “HCG” or “IL4”. These products are sold to consumers thinking it is homeopathy when in reality those who know homeopathy know very well it is not homeopathic. The problem lays in the portion of the population who does not know how to tell the difference. This is the issue the FDA is trying to clear up, they are not trying to shut down homeopathy. If this was the message the media gave to the public the response would be far different. The FDA is trying to understand homeopathy and trying to align themselves with experts in the field to keep homeopathy as it is intended to be.
The following is the response to certain questions posed by the FDA on behalf of the Homeopathic Academy of Naturopathic Physicians.
Testimony by the Homeopathic Academy of Naturopathic Physicians By Lisa Amerine, ND, DHANP April 20, 2015
Introduction: Thank you for the opportunity to speak today at this public hearing. My name is Lisa Amerine; I am a Naturopathic Physician and am board certified by the Homeopathic Academy of Naturopathic Physician (HANP) with diplomate status in Homeopathy. Since a very young age my life has been committed to homeopathy and for the past 11 years I have maintained a highly successful private practice exclusively dedicated to Homeopathy in Lafayette, Colorado. Currently I also sit on the board for the HANP and I am the HANP House of Delegates representative for the American Association of Naturopathic Physicians (AANP), in which I represent the specialty field of homeopathy. I am also a co-leader on what is known as the Materia Medica Pura Project, a collective 30,000 + hour project with the purpose of collecting any existing literature on each homeopathic medicine. This literature includes any proving publications, toxicology reports, and cured cases for every homeopathic medicine. This information is then compiled in one document, the “Materia Medica Pura” and serves as the most up to date information for homeopathic medicines. This on-going project insures that there is up to date and correctly referenced literature on every individual homeopathic medicine.
The Homeopathic Academy of Naturopathic physicians’ is a specialty field recognized with in Naturopathic Medicine. Naturopathic physicians lead our communities throughout the US in natural health care. Physicians who specialize in homeopathy go over and beyond the already vigorous training received in homeopathy at naturopathic medical schools by undergoing further training in homeopathy. Upon completion of this process, which includes an additional board examination, they are awarded diplomate status. Practicing homeopathy is a true specialty in medicine and the diplomate status recognition rewards and acknowledges Physicians who have worked to achieve this status, setting them apart from any others who may be practicing homeopathy, thus Naturopathic Physicians with diplomate status in homeopathy are among the leading experts in homeopathy in the United States. The HANP also serves to further the excellence and success of homeopathy by providing continuing education that further sharpens the skill of not only the Diplomates but by physicians aspiring towards diplomat status. We also are committed to being an education resource for health care providers and the general public who may have questions regarding homeopathy.
Recommendations: HANP would like to respond to three particular questions posed by the FDA.
Question 1. What are consumer and health care provider attitudes towards human drug and biological products labeled as homeopathic?
The licensed homeopathic medical professionals have a vast knowledge of the Materia Medica, which lists the properties of the medicines we use. This literature, when employed in conjunction with consideration of the unique totality of symptoms with which a patient presents, forms the basis for the accurate prescription of homeopathic medicines. Well-trained homeopaths will only prescribe based on these principles. Therefore, medicines labeled as homeopathic, regardless of their source – including human drug and biological products – will not be prescribed unless there is the proper literature found in the monographs to support the prescription. The homeopathic health care professionals, especially those with diplomate status have very busy practices. Frequently we will train our patients regarding basic homeopathic medicines that they can purchase over the counter to take care of simple non-dangerous conditions like an acute cold. The consumers love this because they can try some basic things at home that are often very effective, safe and inexpensive to use. The health care provider likes this because it empowers the patient and leaves time for the physician to treat more serious conditions.
Question 4. Are there areas of the current CPG that could benefit from additional clarity? If so, please explain.
The HANP serves to further the excellence in homeopathy by providing resources and continuing education for providers and the community. In an attempt to further the excellence in homeopathy the HANP believes that FDA’s CPG Sec. 400.400 Conditions Under Which Homeopathic Drugs May be Marketed, needs some clarification. For example: 1. Definition number 2 states, “Drug products containing homeopathic ingredients in combination with non-homeopathic active ingredients are not homeopathic drug products.” While the definition is clear, there is a loophole that many products are taking advantage of. This loophole provides manufactures the opportunity to put a substance in the “inactive” category while leaving the list in the active ingredients listed as HPUS homeopathic remedies that meets definition 2 per the FDA document. These inactive ingredients added are not always stabilizers but often a dietary supplement such as tea tree oil or aloe vera. This allows for manufactures to put products on the market and make an OTC drug claim when otherwise the product would be limited to a dietary supplement status. When this is done the product should not be considered a homeopathic drug, nor should be allowed to be marketed as such. The HANP believes this issue is a good example of where additional clarification could be helpful.
Question 8. Do consumers and health care providers have adequate information to make informed decisions about drug products labeled as homeopathic? [If not, what information, including, for example, information in labeling, would allow consumers and health care providers to be better informed about products labeled as homeopathic?]
The Homeopathic Academy of Naturopathic Physicians serves to provide quality education not only to other health care professionals but also to the lay public. Physicians, in particular, those with diplomate status are on the front lines of homeopathic health care and daily field questions from the consumer and from other health care providers regarding homeopathic products. These experts, because of their extensive knowledge of homeopathy can easily provide information regarding products, which are labeled as homeopathic and comment knowledgeably as to their efficacy and safety. There are many health care providers and consumers who know very little about homeopathy. Our goal with in the HANP is to be able to provide these people with quality information that can help guide them. Therefore the suggestion of the HANP is to maintain a team within the FDA that consists of experts in drug regulation, representative(s) of the American Association of Homeopathic Pharmacists (AAHP) and the Homeopathic Pharmacopoeia Convention of the United States as well as an expert clinical physician with diplomate status who is on the front lines of homeopathic health care and who is also committed to providing quality education to the public. A team comprised of such experts in the field is vital and will be able to help clarify any questions as to homeopathic labeling and most importantly help to ensure the safety of the consumer.
In closing today I would like to end with a story, 150 Years ago on a journey across the country on the Oregon Trail a group of explorers got stuck in the Cascade Mountains due to bad weather. They had to abandon their wagons and finish the trip on foot. They chose to bury their most valuable possessions so they could return to them when conditions were more favorable. Amongst one of those things buried was a small book written by a homeopathic physician, Constantine Hering, titled “The Homoeopathic Domestic Physician” and a small homeopathic medicine kit. For these people and people since then, homeopathic medicines have been effective and safe to use at home if their condition was intense enough to need attention but not severe enough for the care of a physician. There are many books such as this book that still guide the consumers in the lay public about making informed decisions regarding drug products labeled as homeopathic. Because homeopathy is safe and it is fairly easy for the consumer to understand what to buy should they have a minor health ailment, the HANP highly encourages that these homeopathic medicines continue to be available over the counter because they are so effective for helping improve the health of the population. Thank you for your time and consideration.
The two day hearing was full of amazing testimony. Dr. Amy Rothenberg said “the public loves homeopathy for many reasons including its efficacy but especially for its safety profile. The low cost of the medicines, as well as the consistent quality of product, make them appealing to both physician and patient. The consistency and quality are preserved by the American Association of Homeopathic Pharmacists (AAHP) and the Homeopathic Pharmacopeia of the United States (HPUS), using cGMP, and taught to physicians.”
The American Association of Homeopathic Pharmacists (AAHP) noted that consumers buy homeopathic medicines based on the advice of health care providers, friends, family members and internet research.
Dr. Carl Robinson a long practicing homeopath out of Texas noted there are three levels to take into consideration when thinking about labeling. The first level is for the consumer who knows nothing of homeopathy but saw a product at the store and wanted relief. These people don’t know the difference between botanical medicine, supplement therapy and potentially even conventional medicine. The second level is for the consumer who has tried homeopathy either because of a referral from a professional, friend, family or self research and saw great results. This is the case for a speaker at this hearing, the founder of Holistic Moms Network and more importantly the mother of two boys Nancy Peplinsky. She has come to love and trust homeopathy for many reasons including its safety and very low allergy profile for her children who suffer from allergies. The third level is the professional who knows homeopathy well. For this group labeling may not need to be so specific as a well trained practicing homeopath knows that there are potentially several hundred or even thousand indications for one homeopathic medicine. Dr. Robinson suggested that a team be created to help distinguish between such levels as the issue at hand is very complicated.
A FDA commissioner who was a large part in updating the FDA’s CPG Sec. 400.400 document in the 1980’s, Daniel Michaels, urged the FDA to take note and to pay attention as we are a professional group and we are clearly not going away. He suggested the FDA gain advice from us as they have for other issues where experts are needed to help guide the FDA.
The events that took place on April 20 and 21st in Silver Spring Maryland are important. Daniel Michaels said he thought they would go away and never be successful enough to make it to this level, but that did not happen in the 1980’s and it will not happen now. He is right, while there may be a lot of diversity in homeopathy, it is a real medicine and when practiced correctly homeopathy is amongst the leading modalities known to medicine.
Introduced by Ian Luepker, ND, DHANP
So how often to homeopaths find consensus? I know this may sound like a lead-in to a bad joke, but there is a snippet of truth underlying this (rhetorical) question. There has been a rift within homeopathic methodology for the last 15+ years, and it sometimes seems like we can’t agree on anything. I fear that this rift may be undermining our profession.
The HANP strives toward inclusiveness, and as our last issue of Simillimum suggests, we value different methodologies. However, when it comes to core educational standards, the HANP believes every graduating ND student needs to have an understanding of some basic competencies to practice successfully. These core educational competencies are an essential foundation to further study and competent practice. Without them, it is easy to get off track with some of the newer thinking in homeopathy, and become a poor prescriber.
In the Spring of 2004, the HANP Board of Directors, lead by president Neil Tessler, ND, DHANP, decided to spearhead the process of forming an intercollegiate group of all the homeopathic faculty at each of the accredited ND colleges in North America. Their goal was to create a document describing the minimum homeopathic competencies necessary for ND students to accomplish by graduation. The document also provided guidance in developing the homeopathic portion of the NPLEX/NABNE board exams. Over the next three years the Council of Naturopathic College Educators (CNCHE) met and developed a document titled “Minimum Homeopathic Competencies for Naturopathic Education in North America.”
The document is divided into four categories of competency:
- Cognitive competencies: What all ND students should know about homeopathy. This includes materia medica, philosophy, principles, history and homeoprophylaxis.
- Behavioral competencies: What all ND students should be able to do regarding homeopathy. This includes understanding the doctor-patient relationship, case-taking, case-analysis, case-management, and differentiating between acute and chronic conditions.
- Affective competencies: What emotional strategies and skills all ND students should master regarding homeopathic practice. This includes self-awareness, self-care, and setting appropriate boundaries,
- Mixed competencies: Competencies that all ND students should be able to achieve that involve clear mixing of the above groups.
This document has many merits, but most importantly, it is a consensus document that faculty from 5 accredited ND schools agreed upon as a foundation for ND homeopathic competency. Though each member of CHCHE has their own methodology, they found agreement and overlap in what basic competencies should be taught and understood by a graduating ND. Thus finding consensus despite their differences!
This is extraordinary in itself, but the HANP is considering how this document could be utilized to set a baseline for what a DHANP needs to know in order to become certified. To this end, we are considering creating our own DHANP testing question-bank that is based on this document. We are creating a sub-committee to explore developing a question bank based on this document!
If developing a question bank based on this document is something that you are interested in helping the HANP to accomplish, please let us know! Follow this link to access the original “Minimum Homeopathy Competencies for Naturopathic Education in North America” document.
Over the past few years the FDA has begun to further investigate the regulation of homeopathic medicines. Homeopathic medicines are one of the only natural medicines to have some kind of regulation by the FDA. This allows homeopathic medicines to be labeled differently than other supplements in that a homeopathic medicine can make an “Over The Counter” drug claim. This is a great advantage homeopathy has in the industry, however with all great things there can be great abuse. Some companies have begun to make RX claims stating that a homeopathic medicine can cure a disease such as asthma. There are a few problems when any product, in particular a homeopathic medicine makes these kinds of claims. The first is that homeopathy is highly individualized so what may be very effective for one person is not for the next. The second, more of a concern for the FDA is that doing this could potentially put the public at risk. Should there be a product on the market that says it could cure asthma the consumer may purchase this product thinking they can stop any of their other medications. While homeopathy is highly effective in treating many serious diseases, no product should make a general claim as this unless it is given under supervision of a qualified homeopathic doctor. The FDA is planning on making changes and so it is very important for the homeopathic community to come together. Much of the community including the HANP are going to encourage the FDA that while we believe the section under which “Homeopathic Drugs May be Marketed: (FDA’s CPG SEc. 400.400) is sufficient as written, we believe that the enforcement of that guideline should be clarified, in collaboration with the US homeopathy specialty organizations such as the American Association of Homeopathic Pharmacists, Homeopathic Pharmacopoeia Convention of the United States, American Institute of Homeopathy and the Homeopathic Academy of Naturopathic Physicians. We will be providing updates here as this process moves forward.
In the past several months the HANP has welcomed 2 new board members. Autumn Louise joined our team as an official board member acting as our Marketing Coordinator. However she served as the HANP Executive Administrator for the previous 3 years. For the past 4 years Autumn has been instrumental in serving the HANP and has guided our newly structured team to help further the excellence of the Homeopathic Academy of Naturopathic Physicians. Most recently Autumn has spent countless hours in re-designing our web page. “Being involved in the goals and mission of the HANP is important to me because I value the relationship between quality, health-oriented medical care and homeopathic care. I feel they complement each other and create the ideal foundation for achieving optimal health. By supporting quality of care standards and education we are creating opportunities for better health care, deep healing, and increased vitality in our greater communities.” To learn more about Autumn click here.
The second board member HANP has welcomed this year is Dr. Eli Camp. She graduated with her Doctor of Naturopathic Medicine from the Southwest College of Naturopathic Medicine in 2005. Dr. Camp offers excellence in her leadership skills as she has led many associations from a mediocre group to a group of excellence. The Homeopathic Academy of Naturopathic Medicine is very excited to continue to lead experts in homeopathy. Dr. Camp along with the rest of the board are striving to provide excellence for homeopaths around the world. “I believe the way to achieve true health is through the principles of Naturopathic Medicine which are, in part, based on the writings of the father of Homeopathy, Samuel Hahnemann. ‘The physician’s high and only mission is to restore the sick to health, to cure, as it is termed’ (Samuel Hahnemann, 1810).” To learn more about Dr. Camp click here.