Correction: coverage for naturopathic doctors

I see a Naturopathic doctor for irritable bowel syndrome.  It’s the only thing that works, and I’ve tried everything.  I haven’t had health insurance in years, but I will be getting one thanks to Obamacare.  I’ll be going to the exchange, as soon as it starts working.  Will I be able to find a plan that covers naturopathic services?

Natural Patient

Dear Natural Patient,

Good news: The plans offered on the health insurance exchange — known as “Qualified Health Plans” — will cover services from licensed naturopathic physicians.  The Affordable Care Act requires qualified health plans to cover all licensed practitioners without discriminating.

The provider must be giving a service that is covered by the plan and that is within the provider’s license.  This is true of all providers giving services that are paid for by a health plan, naturally.  This means that some services from your naturopath may not be covered.  If you get nutritional supplements or other medicines from your naturopath, these would be covered only if they are FDA-approved drugs.

If you want to know more about naturopathic medicine in Maine, Diane Atwood recently wrote about it in her Bangor Daily News blog Catching Health.

Update: Thank you to all the people who commented and set me straight on this.  I am glad that people helped me to get the up-to-date information on this.

Linda Riddell

About Linda Riddell

A published author and health policy analyst with 25 years’ experience, Linda Riddell's goal is to alleviate the widespread ailment of not knowing what your health plan can do for you.