Who are we outsourcing our health decisions to?

Like all health practitioners, doctors have a role in our health, but they are not God!  They are human!

For optimal health outcomes, it’s essential to have a team of health professionals to call on as needed.  Also important is to know who to go to for what.  There are also good, great, ok, bad and awful in any profession.

Each practitioner has their scope of practice, and it’s essential for them to stay in their lane and for us not to expect advice that they are not qualified to give.

What is the ‘Scope of Practice’?

Each type of health practitioner has their field qualification(s), which gives them specific skill sets and knowledge.  If we recognise this (and if they do), we will quickly identify who we go to when and for what outcome.

Here are a few examples based on the Base Qualification for that profession:

A GP is qualified (Degree Qualified) in General Practice Medicine

  • Can diagnose.
  • Can prescribe medication/pharmaceuticals.
  • Can do limited surgical procedures.
  • Can do injections and immunisations.
  • Can refer to specialists for needs beyond their scope of practice.

Is not generally qualified to:

  • Give dietary/nutritional advice.
  • Analyse pathology results (they rely on the lab report … more on that later)
  • Advise on specific exercise therapy.
  • Prescribe nutritional supplements.

A Chiropractor (Degree Qualified) is qualified to:

  • Do muscular skeletal diagnosis and treatment.

Is not qualified to:

  • Give dietary advice.
  • Prescribe nutritional supplements.

A Nutritional Medicine Practitioner (Degree Qualified) is qualified to

  • Analyse health history and outcomes.
  • Prescribe dietary/nutritional advice specific to the client and their condition/outcomes.
  • Prescribe supplements
  • Work with GPs and other professionals to ensure treatment complements theirs.
  • Know the mechanism of action and contra-indications of pharmaceuticals and medical interventions.

Is not qualified to:

  • Prescribe pharmaceuticals
  • Do any form of surgical procedure.

A Dietician (Degree Qualified) is qualified to:

  • To give generalised dietary/nutritional advice according to the condition
  • Prescribe supplements according to the condition

Is not qualified to:

  • Analyse pathology
  • Prescribe pharmaceuticals.
  • Do any form of surgical procedure.

An Acupuncturist (Degree Qualified) is qualified to:

  • Give acupuncture treatment specific to your condition and health needs
  • Analyse health history and outcomes
  • Work in conjunction with Medical practitioners to gain the best patient outcomes

Is not qualified to:

  • Give medical advice
  • Prescribe nutritional supplements (outside of CM) or Dietary advice
  • Know the mechanism of action and contra-indications of pharmaceuticals and medical interventions
  • Work with GPs and other professionals to ensure treatment complements theirs.

With any health practitioner, it is important:

  • They have the relevant level of qualifications
  • You feel rapport within the first few visits
  • That you are heard and respected
  • That you feel like you are getting outcomes within a reasonable amount of time
  • That they stay within their scope of practice and refer outside of this

We are living in our body, intuitively knowing when it is not right and what feeds it healthily.

The less we rely on outsourcing and searching for the magic wand, diagnosis or pill, the more we insist of the level of care and testing, the better we control the outcomes.

Let’s own responsibility for our health outcomes and outsource wisely as necessary.