The Canadian College of Naturopathic Medicine (CCNM) continues to be at the forefront of innovations in clinical training and research. Our students are the beneficiaries of this growth, applying the skills they’ve learned over four years to patients with a diverse range of healthcare needs.
CCNM operates the Brampton Naturopathic Teaching Clinic, the only naturopathic clinic in a hospital setting in Canada, and the Ottawa Integrative Cancer Centre (OICC), the first integrative cancer care and research centre of its kind in Eastern Canada. The College is also poised to enhance the high-quality patient care delivered at the Robert Schad Naturopathic Clinic (RSNC), our onsite teaching clinic. Here’s a sample of the exciting developments that we have our eye on right now.
Supporting patients with chronic mental illness
A new, dedicated mental health focus area will begin this month at the RSNC. Led by chief naturopathic medical officer Dr. Jonathan Prousky, the program will treat patients mainly with clinical nutrition, botanical medicine, and lifestyle modifications.
CCNM’s research on patient care shows us that mental health is listed as one of the top three reasons patients visit the clinic, so the new focus area will provide much-needed healthcare options to an underserved population. Since many of our patients rely on conventional medications, we’ll be able to better comprehend how integrative approaches utilizing naturopathic medicine can treat chronic mental health conditions.
Our students will have the opportunity to work directly with patients under Dr. Prousky’s mentorship and supervision. Some of the interesting work that they can do includes completing patient intakes from a mental health perspective, practicing their counseling techniques, understanding mental health disorder diagnoses, and building relationships with other mental health professionals in the community.
The mental health focus is the most recent addition to the RSNC’s roster of focused clinical areas, which also include adjunctive (supportive) cancer care, fertility and reproductive health, fibromyalgia and chronic fatigue, sports medicine and pain management, and pediatrics.
A new cancer care and research centre
Named in appreciation of donors John and Thea Patterson, the Patterson Institute is expected to open at CCNM sometime this summer. There will be two distinct arms of the Institute. The first, the Integrative Cancer Clinic, will be entirely devoted to patient care provided by our student clinical interns; the second, the Patterson Institute, will be a hub for conducting research and publishing practice guidelines. Serving as director and overseeing all activities is CCNM Class of 1996 graduate and longtime clinic faculty member, Dr. Peter Papadogianis.
Joint research project promises to detect breast cancer accurately
Researchers from both the OICC and the Ottawa Hospital Breast Health Centre are in the midst of a two-year study to examine new 3D mammography technology. The model allows for a more complete examination of breast tissue and increases the accuracy of detecting cases of cancer. The current 2D mammogram provides only a single picture of the tissue, while the 3D version takes many cross-sectional images.
The study, also being conducted at research centres in Toronto and Vancouver, will randomly test 2,000 women over a two-year period while researchers monitor the results.
In related news, executive director of the OICC and Class of 2003 graduate Dr. Dugald Seely is among the co-authors of newly updated clinical guidelines from the Society for Integrative Oncology. The findings recommend which integrative treatments are most successful and safe for patients with breast cancer, based on more than 80 different therapies and evidence of efficacy.
Keep up with the latest news on CCNM’s offerings and other noteworthy developments by visiting their website.