Naturopathic Medicine Common questions:

How are Naturopathic Doctors trained?

BC requires licensing of all Naturopathic Physicians, which requires that they complete a minimum of 3 years of pre-medical undergraduate training and a 4 year post-graduate training at an accredited naturopathic medical school. Training includes over 3000 classroom hours in basic and conventional clinical sciences as well as nutrition, counseling, and botanical medicine and roughly 2000 hours of Clinic experience in Physical Medicine, Counseling and General Medicine. ND’s also must complete standard North American exams in all the basic and clinical sciences as well as a practical skills exam.

What can I expect from my first visit to Dr. Kellie?

Your first visit is 1 hour with Dr Ferguson. In that time, she will ask you a series of questions related to your health and lifestyle. She will also spend some time on a physical exam and will create a treatment plan with you. The treatment approach will take into account any standard laboratory results as well as details including dietary habits, stress management, exercise and food sensitivities. The health plan will be developed according to your needs and lifestyle to find the approach that will be the most effective (and manageable) for you. Future visits will be 15-30 mins (depending on the complexity of your case).

What kinds of conditions or illnesses can a Naturopathic Physician treat?

Virtually all acute and chronic conditions can benefit from naturopathic care, though medical emergencies are referred to the local hospital. Some conditions may best be addressed using both conventional and naturopathic medicine, in which case Dr. Kellie may suggest working along side your MD.

Can I stop my medicines and use something natural?

Medications are a complicated world. They are a specific and targeted tool and are usually highly effective, even though they also come with lots of side effects. While there are often natural alternatives to medications, such as cholesterol lowering medications or antidepressants, sometimes this isn’t a safe option. If you choose, Dr. Kellie can help you find alternatives to restore your health and she will give you enough information to make safe effective choices. Please note: most medications are dangerous if discontinued abruptly so always check in with a healthcare practitioner before altering any medications.

I’ve heard all Naturopathic Physicians make you stop Dairy and Sugar!

Many people have sensitivities to dairy and sugar and would benefit from avoiding them – maybe most of us would, but a treatment plan has to be specific to you and your life and what will be effective for you. No plan will work if it’s too difficult to follow. You and Dr. Ferguson will create one together, and one that will be manageable and effective.

Does insurance cover naturopathic care?

Unfortunately there is no MSP coverage available to cover ND visits unless you are on premium assistance. Most extended health care plans (i.e. private plans through your employer or school) do cover visits and usually 80% up to a yearly maximum. Please clarify your coverage with your benefits manager. Dr. Kellie will provide you with a detailed receipt so that you can process your claim directly.

For questions not answered here please contact Dr. Kellie Ferguson at (250) 598-3718 or by email at