MAY 7, 2013


OUR BILL PASSED

We are all disappointed that the Pediatrician amendment was put on SB-215 at the last minute. We fought all the Pediatrician amendments throughout the session. When SB-215 was on the second reading on the House Floor, we were informed that in order for the House Majority leadership to move the bill forward to the third reading, the amendment would need to remain intact and could not be stripped off at Conference Committee. We polled the CCNH members and the majority wanted to pass SB-215 to give all NHP's a legal right to practice. Ultimately it was the Senator's choice to decide. We do feel that NHP's can still work around the amendment because we do not "treat" (which is defined as providing medical care) children or anyone, for that matter. We had many opponents to SB-215 (CMS, DORA, Acupuncturists, Dietitians, OT/PT's, Pediatricians, etc.) and spent countless hours in negotiations with each stakeholder. Here was the outcome of those negotiations:
1. CMS - amendment to prohibit NHP's from working with pregnant women. We defeated this amendment.
2. CMS - amendment to prohibit NHP's from working with cancer patients. We defeated this amendment.
3. CMS/DORA - amendment prohibiting NHP's from violating the Colorado Medical Practice Act (which is what we currently do and the reason for this bill in the first place). We defeated this amendment.
4. Dietitians - amendment prohibiting NHP's from practicing nutrition. We defeated this amendment.
5. Acupuncturists - amendment prohibiting NHP's from using Chinese herbs and prohibiting NHP's from using lasers to stimulate acupuncture points. We defeated this amendment.
6. PT/OT - amendments prohibiting various overlapping therapies. We defeated these amendments.
7. CoAND - many attempts to put language in SB-215 prohibiting overlapping modalities in HB-1111. We defeated ALL these amendments.

With that being said, I feel we accomplished a lot and we need to be proud of our efforts and thankful for Senator Jahn, Representative Ginal and Donnah Moody and for all their hard work.

As you all know, HB-1111 was also passed. As a result, it was extremely important that we passed SB-215 because in the end, the language in HB-1111 did not give us a legal right to practice (as we feared all along), but only an exemption from their practice act. So, without SB-215, we would have been in the same boat as the one we sailed in on - that being practicing illegally and in violation of the Medical Practice Act. We were also informed that DORA would start coming after the NHP's and prosecute them.

Their are some parental rights and practitioner groups who are trying to derail SB-215 and are lobbying Governor Hickenlooper to veto our bill. We have the situation under control. It is very upsetting that these groups are not seeing the big picture and realizing that our practices will not be affected very much by this legislation - except for the better.

HB-1111 will go into effect on 8/7/13. We are advising any NHP who uses the "ND", "Naturopathic Doctor" or "Doctor of Naturopathy" title to discontinue using it immediately. Since "Traditional Naturopathic Doctor" is not a protected title in HB-1111, I am choosing to use that title. You can pick any naturopathic title, other than the three listed previously.

I will work up a Disclosure Form and send it out as a sample for you to use in your practices. We are very excited to be legally practicing in Colorado for the very first time!!

Thank you,
Joanie Coffey, TND, PhD, BCIM, CNC, CTN
President, Colorado Coalition for Natural Health

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