About the Institute for Natural Medicine

The Institute for Natural Medicine is a non-profit 501(c)(3) organization, in collaboration with the American Association of Naturopathic Physicians. Our mission is to transform healthcare in America by increasing both public awareness of naturopathic medicine and access to naturopathic doctors for patients.

We believe that naturopathic medicine, with its unique principles and practices, has the potential to reverse the tide of chronic illness that overwhelms existing health care systems and to empower people to achieve and maintain their optimal lifelong health.

We strive to achieve this mission through a number of  initiatives:

  • Education – Reveal the unique benefits and outcomes of naturopathic medicine
  • Access – Connect patients to licensed naturopathic doctors
  • Research – Expand quality research of this complex and comprehensive system of medicine

INM also works to strengthen the field of naturopathic medicine from the inside by facilitating robust intra-professional communication, cultivating added residency and practice opportunities for NDs, and supporting alliance-building across health care professions.

Our long-term vision includes supporting extended clinical studies that compare naturopathic medical care to, conventional medical treatments.

The INM and the American Association of Naturopathic Physicians (AANP) work in alliance to strengthen our collective efforts. Together, we hope to support a wide variety of activities related to public education, access to natural medical care and research.

Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion

The Institute for Natural Medicine (INM) recognizes that human health entails a complex set of factors that span physical, mental, emotional, cultural, and socioeconomic realities. Each person possesses intersecting identities based on, but not limited to, their age, racial, ethnic, religious, sexual, gender, socioeconomic and physical dis/abilities. Patient needs as connected to these factors and identities must be considered in the pursuit of fostering wellness. To provide comprehensive health care that addresses all these factors, practitioners strive to be cognizant of how these factors interact with one another. This means addressing intersecting identities with their patients and prescribing treatments that honor the traditions and life ways of their patients.

As advocates for holistic, naturopathic health care, we know that our work must contribute to an environment of equitable access for all. That means ensuring that all patients have the opportunity to see themselves reflected in the educational materials that we develop, that we consider varying needs for accessibility in disseminating our materials, and that we maintain a critical eye that unwaveringly considers how we can positively impact health equity through our work educating the public, increasing access to licensed NDs, and growing the body of research about naturopathic medicine.

History and Accomplishments

The Institute for Natural Medicine was established in 1992 as a non-profit organization serving the profession of natural medicine and the public Today, our efforts are focused on public education and connecting patients to licensed NDs. Since its founding, the INM has served the natural medicine world in many ways. The INM has:

  • Launched the Association of Accredited Naturopathic Medical Colleges
  • Supported ongoing public education efforts
  • Played a key role in obtaining licensure for naturopathic physicians in California
  • Funded research grants for new graduates through the Dr. John Bastyr Sunshine Fund Clinical Investigator Research Fellowships
  • Launched and hosts the Naturopathic Medicine Collaborative, a cooperative group of 76+ stakeholder organizations from the profession
  • Funded a full time States Coordinator to support pre-licensed states in their organizational and educational efforts
  • Launched “Naturally Well” classes teaching healthy eating and lifestyle to at risk youth
  • Facilitated the creation of nine residency sites
  • Launched the Campaign for Naturopathic Medicine, which generates positive content for online formats, educating and informing the public about the breath, scope and efficacy of naturopathic medicine
  • Coordinated the INM Ambassador program, helping encourage and support NDs with public facing content and real-life tools to help teach, write and advocate for the profession
  • Created a multiorganizational task force dedicated to partnering with primary care community health clinics in Washington state to bring clinical nutrition information and strategies to providers and patients.
  • Launched a Find a Doctor service on the INM website which aims to provide access to all licensed naturopathic doctors in the US.