“Naturopathic medicine is always on the frontier of medicine. What we need to do is increase awareness and show that we’re the original integrative, holistic doctors.”
Laying the groundwork to become an ND
An arrhythmia first led Robert Kachko, ND, LAc into the world of natural medicine. Desperate to find answers, he sought the care of a Chinese medicine specialist. While he still isn’t sure what the specialist did, his cardiologist gave him a clean bill of health at his follow up.
His personal health and professional experience as an emergency medical technician, led Dr. Kachko to explore career options in the health care. Knowing that he wanted to offer patient-centered care, he found his calling in naturopathic medicine.
“Treating patients after you really get to know them really made sense to me. Not to say that conventional medicine doesn’t work, but the construct of naturopathic medicine allows us to spend more time with people.” First office visits with naturopathic physicians are likely to last 60-90 minutes.
UBSNM as a springboard
Dr. Kachko pursued his education at UBSNM, graduating Summa Cum Laude with a doctorate degree in naturopathic medicine and a master’s in acupuncture. Dr. Kachko was the class president during his first year of school, and the founding president of the University of Bridgeport chapter of Naturopathic Medical Student Association (NMSA). He was a student representative on the House of Delegates for the American Association of Naturopathic Physicians (AANP).
Since graduation, Dr. Kachko has remained an advocate and leader of the naturopathic profession. Dr. Kachko is the president of the American Association of Naturopathic Physicians. He is also active on the New York Association of Naturopathic Physicans‘ Legislative Team and the Medical and Dental Advisory Board: Sharp Again Naturally. Dr. Kachko practices at Inner Source Natural Health and Acupuncture in New York City and is the co-founder and CEO of TribeRx.
Finding fulfillment as an ND
“There are two types of people who see naturopathic doctors: Those who are proactive about their health and view NDs as an integral part that, and those who see NDs as a last resort, because nothing else has worked for them.”
Dr. Kachko is passionate about helping both groups and is thankful for the tools he has acquired in his education and practice to help them prevent ailments. He also finds considerable joy when those who come in as a last resort benefit from naturopathic medicine.
“It sets a light bulb off in them, and that’s really rewarding. The physician-patient relationship is sacred, and we have an opportunity to spend time with people and share in their journey.” Dr. Kachko sees the naturopathic profession’s biggest strengths in “the eclectic, individual nature of how of how NDs practice.”
Advice for aspiring NDs
Dr. Kachko has never lost sight of why he chose naturopathic medicine – not just to help people, but to become a part of their lives. Through the rigors of school, and the demands of practice, Dr. Kachko believes it’s vital that young NDs and future students never lose sight of their why.
In order to stay rooted to his why, Dr. Kachko stays actively involved, and recommends others do the same. “It wasn’t enough for me to say I want things to change. I encourage current and prospective students to make the changes they want to see happen. Naturopathic medicine is always on the frontier of medicine. What we need to do is increase awareness and show that we’re the original integrative, holistic doctors.”
Pursuing your passion is possible at any age. “I had classmates who had either just started their first career, or were way into their original careers, who took the leap and made the change to a new profession. I think it’s a testament to the strength of naturopathic medicine that people are willing to take this leap and make that change.” Click here to learn more about three professionals who changed careers to naturopathic medicine.
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