Page 31 - 2014-mar-apr

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Healthcare Journal of LITTLE ROCK
MAR / APR 2014
ofAccredited Naturopathic Medical Colleges
(AANMC) Dr. JoAnnYanez, ND, MPH. “We’re
teaching people how to have healthy life-
styles so that hopefully they minimize their
illness or get rid of it altogether. It’s personal
responsibility, it’s personal awareness that
are the tools to living a healthy lifestyle.”
Is it catching on in Arkansas?
While this branch of medicine is popular
in certain parts of the country, residents of
Arkansas seem more hesitant to adapt and
seek out this type of treatment.
Dr. Phillip Burbutes, an uncertified ND,
appears to be the only remaining naturo-
pathic practitioner in Little Rock. He laments
is that few states actually license naturo-
pathic doctors to practice and Arkansas is
not among them. For this reason, insurance
will not cover naturopathic care in the state.
“In a state like this where you can’t accept
insurance, a lot of people don’t want to pay
out of pocket for their healthcare. They’re
not used to doing that outside of their insur-
ance, and so that prohibits a lot of people
from doing naturopathic care too,” said Dr.
Naturopathic doctors stand firm in their
position that natural, preventative, and
patient-controlled care is key in alleviating
many of the health problems seen in this
country today. It remains to be seen, but it
will be interesting and important to watch
the effects that naturopathic medicine has
on patients and to determine how viable an
option it can be for widespread treatment.
“I am very passionate about prevention,
and I really think that the key to address-
ing our healthcare crisis is preventing dis-
ease,” says Dr. Yanez. “If we can focus more
on the basics of health and what it takes to
be a healthy person—good thoughts, good
food, good water, good movement—in most
cases, most of the illnesses that we see in
this country wouldn’t be there.”
Phillip Burbutes
the state of naturopathic medicine in the city.
“Little Rock has not been supportive to
naturopathic medicine in general,” says Dr.
Burbutes. “This has been recently realized by
two other NDs leaving Little Rock for Port-
land, Oregon. Their only reason for leaving
was the total lack of support of the Little
Rock community.” 
Dr. Hickman concurs. “In the South, it’s
a very strong religious place, so there’s a
lot of misconceptions that maybe naturo-
pathic medicine is new age or that it’s snake
oil salesman type stuff.”
These misconceptions may contribute
to the lack of naturopathic practitioners
in Little Rock. Another contributing factor