No improvement in disclosure of natural health product use to primary care medical doctors in the last 15 years: A survey of naturopathic patients
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BACKGROUND: The use of natural health products (NHPs) is common in North America. In 2003, we found that 42% of NHP users had not disclosed this information to their primary care medical doctors (MDs). We repeated our survey in 2018/2019 to explore if the rate of NHP use disclosure had improved. METHODS: From November 2018-February 2019, a 21-item survey about NHP use and disclosure was administered to adult patients who visited the Robert Schad Naturopathic Clinic in Toronto, Canada. RESULTS: Almost all patients surveyed were using NHPs (99%), and 46% were using NHPs and prescription medication concurrently. Consistent with our 2003 findings, 42% of respondents who used NHPs did not disclose this information to their MD. CONCLUSION: Disclosure of NHP use to MDs by naturopathic patients is limited and remained unchanged over the past 15 years. Future research should explore primary care MDs' hesitancy to inquire about patient NHP use.
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