Homeopathic Practice in the U.S.

The author looks at the characteristics of homeopathic practitioners in the U.S., dividing them into five levels. Unlicensed practitioners appear as the largest group. Submitted by the American Medical College of Homeopathy.

Homeopathy fell out of favor in the United States in the early 20th century, following the Flexner report and a move toward allopathic medicine.(1) Since the 1970’s, homeopathy has been regaining popularity slowly, though not at the levels seen earlier. It is of interest to look at the characteristics of current U.S. homeopathic practitioners and their practices.

Todd Rowe, MD, MD(H), CCH, DHt, and Iris Bell, MD, MD(H), PhD surveyed homeopathic practitioners across the U.S. in 2006, with the purpose of characterizing both the providers of homeopathic care and their practices. (2) They found five levels of homeopathic practice.

  • Level one includes those who are appreciators of homeopathy but do not practice it. Estimates are that no more than 4% of the US population are level one supporters of homeopathy.
  • Level two individuals are casual practitioners who learn to prescribe based on condition and with a focus on first aid. Estimates are that about 0.1% of the total population practice at this level.
  • Level three practitioners are focused on acute care, with homeopathy used regularly.
  • Level four practitioners are usually licensed healthcare providers who learn to prescribe a limited number of “constitutional remedies” that are used in the treatment of deeper chronic conditions. This style of homeopathy is part of the overall practice of the individual.
  • The level five practitioner self-identifies as a homeopath, and homeopathy is the primary focus of the individual’s work.

The chart below looks at estimates of licensed practitioners, for whom total numbers were available from their professional associations, and examines the level at which they tend to practice. These estimates came from leaders within the homeopathic community.

Practitioner TypeTotal # in U.S.Level ThreeLevel FourLevel Five
MD850,0001,000700400
ND*6,500-10,0002,0001,000150
DC53,0005,00020050
DVM54,0001,00025050
Unlicensed**300,00032,5006,3502,200

*numbers vary based on definition of naturopath

**total U.S. population

As indicated in the foregoing chart, the largest number of practitioners are unlicensed. It is noteworthy that both naturopaths and chiropractors are found to practice at an acute care level. Other licensed practitioners, for whom the total number of practitioners in the U.S. is not available, includes registered nurses in an independent clinical setting, Oriental Medicine practitioners, and acupuncturists

Homeopathic practice in the U.S.References:

  1. The history of American homeopathy: from rational medicine to holistic health care

John S. Haller and Michael A. Flannery, University Press, 2009, p14-32.

  1. National Homeopathic Practitioner Survey” A study Conducted by the American Medical College Of Homeopathy Department of Research, Todd Rowe MD, MD(H), CCH, DHt, Iris Bell MD, MD(H)¸PhD., Jan 2007, available on the AMCH website.

About the author

Kathy Slaine

Kathy Slaine

Kathy Slaine is currently a homeopathic student at the American College of Homeopathy. She is a board certified pediatrician, who also worked in research and administration. The successful treatment of her severely ill son brought her to homeopathy.

11 Comments

  • I would love to see moe Homeopathic practioners and schools in US. I biggest culprit is that it needs to be accepted method of treatment when it comes to government and insurence indutry to reimburse. I beleive lack of good practitioner and funding makes it difficult for for access. I on the other hand would like to practice Homeopathy but in the litigation based practice structure I don’t want to risk it. I came from India 25 yrs ago with good 5-6 yrs of very busy practice and had to give that up. I wish for the younger generation to GO GET IT, may be people like me can take an advantage of it.

  • I would love to see more Homeopathic practitioners and schools in the US. The biggest culprit is that it needs to be an accepted method of treatment when it comes to government and insurance industry reimbursement. I would like to practice Homeopathy but in the litigation based practice structure I don’t want to risk it. I came from India 25 yrs ago with a good 5-6 yrs of very busy practice and had to give that up. I wish for the younger generation to GO GET IT. Maybe people like me can take an advantage of it.

  • I would like to frankly speak out that day by day homeopathy treatment is going up satisfactory.to speak the true i realized that homeopathy treatment is better than other treatment in order to its very much less side effect whereas other is so high. what if some one give medicine rightly then disease must be cured,there is no doubt about it.So i have fully faith on homeopathy treatment and medicine.

    Mohidul

  • Dear Doctor Kathy Slaine, Hello
    1. Thanks for giving the beautiful and informative statistics of the homeopathic practice in USA.
    2. Statistics is the most important factor in identifying/analyzing the actual situation and it is a starting point for future planning of a strategy and its implementation.
    3. It also helps in the assessing the feasibility and viability of a plan and its cost effectiveness.
    Thanks for writing a brief and crisp article which contains a lot if information.
    4. I will try to write about the situation of Homeopathy in Pakistan.
    Dr.Saif(MBBS,MPH,Specialist in Community Medicine,RHMP)

  • I was disappointed to not see osteopathic physicians mentioned in your article on homeopathy in USA . As fully licensed physicians, did you bundle us with MD’s, or exclude us? As the fastest growing sector of health care providers in the USA, you are remiss! Several of my mentors during my training were osteopaths who also utilized homeopathy regularly. I have continued in the same vein introducing medical students and residents to the benefits of homeopathic treatment. The combination of osteopathic neuro musculoskeletal medicine and constitutional homeopathy is profound. Yusuf Erskine DO.

  • A rare article especially about Homoeopathy in U S. Informative and hopeful about the health of human community over the globe at a time when the modern medicine recklessly lead human society to total destruction enforcing use of poisons as such named as drugs driven against the expressions of human systems labelling them as some named ‘diseases’ ultimately to succumb to the destructive and reactive results of actions of such drugs to struggle again to survive in a name disguised as another disease yet to understand the cause of production of such unrecognisable conditions prooduced by the long lasting effects of indiscriminately used poisonous drugs. Almighty may save jhuman race in the hands of Homoeopathy asometimes.

  • DEAR DR
    HOMEOPATHY CANNOT TAKE THE PLACE OF ALLOPATHY.HOMEOPATHY IS A SCIENCE OF INDIVIDUALISATION OF REMEDY. THAT THE PATIENT DISEASE SHOULD TALLY THE REMEDY WHICH IS A VERY DIFFICULT PROCESS FOR DR TO FIND 100 OF REMEDIES WHICH LOOK LIKE SAME.DR CAN OBTAIN A DIFFERENCE IN THEM AFTER GREAT LABOUR IN EACH CASE. IN CASE THE MEDICINE IS NOT EXACT ONE THE TIME LOST WILL NOT COME BACK AND PATIENT WILL LOSS ALL FAITH IN HOMEOPATHY. FOR FINDING A CORRECT MEDICINE THE PATIENT DOES NOT COOPRATE AS HE IS CONFUSED WITH SO MANY QUESTIONS ASKED BY DR.THANKS
    DR SHEKHAR

  • hi,
    it very important to see that what is the place of homoeopathy & homopath in USA .it get from your article. I expect that in future homoeopathy will devlop inUSA
    with regards,
    patil satish

  • Thank you all for your comments. I hope homeopathy will continue it’s increase in popularity here in the US. Many individuals with chronic disease are finding alternative medicine as a means of dealing with their challenges.

    The issue of reimbursement here in the US is a double edged sword. If you are routinely remimbursed for services, as a physician, the insurance companies become quite intrusive into your practice, demanding certain benchmark standards be met and documented. You also then end up having to submit tons of paperwork, which requires hiring individuals.

    As far as Osteopathic physicians and whether they are included.. The numbers of practitioners of homeopathy listed as MDs include DOs. The total number of allopathic practitioners includes only MDs. Thank you for bringing this error to my attention. I have high respect for osteopaths and have personally used osteopathic services for manipulation many times. Best wishes!

  • Dear Kathy,

    I was mentored by you through BBBS of AZ in the 1990’s. I have several homeopathic specific questions and pediatric questions.
    Could you please contact me at your earliest convenience.

    Best Regards,

    Sarah Snow

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