Frequently asked questions
The most frequently asked questions and answers to us are listed below:
- Where is my prescription or order at this moment?
- How can I place an order or prescription at the NatuurApotheek such that this recipe can be processed by the pharmacy as quickly as possible?
- What needs to be on the prescription or which information is necessary for the pharmacy to process your prescription?
- What is the quickest way to find and to order a dietary supplement with us?
- How can I as a practitioner easily order all kinds of ready-made natural medicines at the NatuurApotheek?
- How to get price information at the NatuurApotheek?
- Can I ask the NatuurApotheek to make and deliver a preparation with urgency?
- What special services can the NatuurApotheek offer me?
Quackery - The NatuurApotheek does not participate!
The NatuurApotheek supports course days on phytotherapy which may be of interest to doctors and therapists. All activities supported by the NatuurApotheek have nothing to do with the promotion of quackery, but seek the opposite, namely the further integration and acceptance of natural medicine in mainstream medicine. Natural medicine has long been proven and should be part of mainstream medicine.
Course Days supported by the Natural Pharmacy
Course Days supported by the NatuurApotheek are intended for doctors and therapists who work from a naturopathic practice, so for practitioners who have gained at least a basic knowledge of the relevant part of the naturopathy. For these courses, recruitment is done by email for recognized professionals, collaborating doctors and therapists who are familiar for the NatuurApotheek.
The NatuurApotheek daily advises many patients to always first contact an authorized phytotherapist or naturopathic doctor to determine the correct diagnosis and treatment. The NatuurApotheek will not give a treatment to a patient directly. The standard working method of the NatuurApotheek is that pursuant to a prescription from a doctor or therapist, a preferably natural medicine is delivered to the patient.
The NatuurApotheek actively supports all courses of phytotherapy and orthomolecular therapy where it has built a relationship with, to promote good use of phytotherapy and orthomolecular therapies. It mainly involves courses with a lot of knowledge and proven experience in the past, in order to educate phytotherapists or orthomolecular therapists on a sufficient level (approx. HBO). Among others, the following courses are recommended by the NatuurApotheek:
Cooperation between International Lectures, TCMA and OTCG: New transnational two-year Chinese herbs training
Academy Bo Yi Traditional Chinese Medicine
OTCG - Training Institute for Traditional Chinese Medicine
ITCM - Institute for TCM
Traditional Chinese Medicine Academy Netherlands
SWERF – WAVAN Education and Research Foundation
Qing Bai - Academy of Chinese Medicine
Healthcare-Academy Den Hoek
Silver Linde - veterinary naturopathy
Ortho Linea - School of Orthomolecular Medicine
In addition, the NatuurApotheek cooperates with many professional associations such as Zhong, NVA, NAAV, WAVAN, MBOG, AVIG, BCND, SCwD, SNVA, NWP, VBAG, VNT, ABNG, BAF, NGOO, NVVM, Eufom, BVGA-ABMA, and many others.
Together we know more and share knowledge about the best practice
The NatuurApotheek independently organizes KEP days. KEP represents Knowledge Exchange Program between prescribers of phytotherapies and / or orthomolecular therapies. The idea arose to organize, similar to an FTO (Pharmacotherapy Consultation), meetings between complementary working doctors and therapists. See the link below of the KEP day’s program: http://www.NatuurApotheek .com/index.php/nieuws/nieuws-2
All presentations of the KEP meetings are made available to the St. Dong XI and can be seen on their website which is private for doctors and therapists:
Progressive method for monitoring interactions with synthetic drugs
In the past years the NatuurApotheek has independently developed an advanced method to appropriately assess interactions between regular synthetic drugs and herbal medicine. The pharmacy conducts such interaction-checks many times a day on request of doctors, therapists and patients free of charge. Patients receive advice on how to deal with the combination of medicines they use. We seek to strengthen the relationship between the patient and his/her practitioners in order to promote the acceptance of natural medicine as a regular treatment.
Second opinion for diagnosis and treatment strategy on request
Additionally, in the past years, the pharmacy has independently invested in her working methods to help phytotherapists who are uncertain in their diagnosis and treatment strategy. They can submit the entire diagnosis and treatment strategy which is then checked in the NatuurApotheek completely for free, on whether there are any comments to make and whether there are other possibilities (sometimes in conjunction with other doctors or phytotherapists).
Further professionalization and promotion of the quality of herbal medicine
The NatuurApotheek supports a register of registered phytotherapists thus enhancing the quality of phytotherapy in the Netherlands also in this way. Therefore, the NatuurApotheek works closely with the NVF, the only scientific society regarding phytotherapy in the Netherlands, see: http://fyto.nl/ . The scientific library of the NatuurApotheek, built in its 35 years of existence, is available to the affiliated doctors and (phyto) therapists.
The NatuurApotheek works only with top quality raw materials and makes its natural compounds at the highest achievable pharmaceutical level, completely transparent to all affiliated doctors and therapists. All compounds including all exact quantities and the quality of all raw materials are accessible to all prescribers. Unfortunately, there are few companies in the Netherlands which pursue such quality and transparency. On the contrary, in Traditional Chinese Medicine, the quality of compounds is often inadequate. The frequent use of so-called patent formulas of which the composition is completely unknown is a reason for caution and control of the patient and prescriber. Moreover, any therapist can buy these formulas anywhere without information, because these formulas or products are regarded as nutritional supplements by the Dutch Food Safety Authority (NVWA). These patent formulas are also simply used for TCM treatments (without anything known about the quality and application of these formulas).
The NatuurApotheek supports research that can contribute to the safe and effective use of natural medicines i.e. phytotherapy. The NatuurApotheek also supports research on the treatment of side effects of synthetic medicines with phytotherapy, and research which can improve the quality of life by using phytotherapy.
An example of a study in which the NatuurApotheek has been working is a comparative research between a composed plant extract and hormone therapy during the menopause: "The effect of Chinese herbal medicines (CHM) on menopausal symptoms compared to hormone replacement therapy (HRT) and placebo"; Kwee SH , , HH Tan , A. Marsman , C. Wauters ; Elsevier Maturitas, September 20, 2007 , Volume 58, Issue 1, Pages 83-90, see: http://www.maturitas.org/article/S0378-5122(07)00217-4/abstract
Currently the NatuurApotheek supports research on the anti-cancer activity of various hydrophilic concentrates. This research takes place prior to clinical research on the effect of a composite hydrophilic concentrate on the quality of life and the progression of lung cancer in a specific group of lung cancer patients.
In addition, a research is currently being started on the qualitative and quantitative compositions of single hydrophilic concentrates in relation to the compositions of the raw herbs cq the basis materials. The purpose is to prepare also hydrophilic concentrates of constant strengths on the basis of levels of active substances or marker substances.
Also there is a research launched on the possibilities to register a complex herbal extract (hydrophilic extract or concentrate or dry extract cq. granulates) as a herbal medicine in Germany and the Netherlands through the procedure of 'Traditional Herbal Medicinal Products.
An example of a course day supported by the NatuurApotheek
One of the above courses in Chinese herbal medicine (OTCG) yearly organizes an introduction day on the implementation of a number of commonly used Chinese herbal formulations. TCM doctors and therapists get additional information on these herbal compounds so that they can apply the respective compositions with more knowledge and to match with the patient. These herbal formulations (so-called KAN formulas) can be applied well from the TCM diagnosis and with responsibility. It is a perfect course-day to get acupuncturists interested for an extensive herbal training and also to offer the best possible support when using these formulas.
These KAN formulas are produced under GMP conditions for more than 30 years and are therefore one of the few Chinese herbal compositions which meet western quality standards and which can be registered in Europe as 'Traditional Herbal Medicinal Products' because they are already used therapeutically in Europe in the desired quality and in the same composition for more than 30 years.
Although the KAN formulas are regarded as a nutritional supplement by the NVWA, they now accept the position of the NatuurApotheek that it is not concerning nutritional supplements but natural medicines where it is desired to restrict direct access for patients to these products.
Below is a response of pharmacist Lipperts to a letter of the NVWA on this subject
"The prepacked herbal remedies from the US (i.e. the KAN products) are not sold to third parties as goods but solely provided as UA medicines. This means that, on delivery, either they are provided with a personal label with the name of a patient and that the delivery is recorded in his/her pharmaceutically record in the pharmacy, or that these medicines are delivered in limited quantities in the name of the prescriber for the purpose of applying these medications in acute situations. In these cases the prescriber can give the medication directly to the patient. In any case, we have no knowledge of any prescribers bringing these medicines on the market.
My advisors and I have the opinion that the KAN products are unregistered own-prepared medicines. These medicines are labeled with a Dutch label which is made by a ‘pharmacy information system’ (AIS) in the name of the concerning patient, and which meets the Medicines Act. This means for example that the dosage information and relevant warnings are specified on the label for the patient.
The production of these KAN products is outsourced to the company KAN Herb Company (USA) under GMP conditions. Each original product label reads in capital letters: FOR PROFESSIONAL USE ONLY. The NatuurApotheek considers these products as a non-registered, own-prepared medicines with a so-called UA delivery regime. In addition to the mandatory labeling requirements for the delivery of a medicine, this also means that the NatuurApotheek ascertains the quality of the prescriber of these products. If the prescriber is not a doctor, the NatuurApotheek proposes as a minimum requirement that the prescriber has demonstrable sufficient knowledge of Chinese medicine so that these products can be prescribed for the right indication.
Demonstrable sufficient knowledge of Chinese Medicines is interpreted by the NatuurApotheek as successfully completed at least the base year of Chinese Medicines, with at least one of the five basic directions of the Chinese Medicines successfully completed (acupuncture + 2 years, Chinese phytotherapy + 2 years, food science + 1 year, qi gong + one year, or Tuina + 1 year), in one of the regular training institutions in Chinese Medicines in the Netherlands and/or Belgium (a.o. International Lectures, Bo Yi, OTCG, TCMA, Qing Bai). Without this minimal knowledge of traditional Chinese Medicines, it is not possible to use these KAN products with responsibility, for the Chinese indication cannot be determined then. This clarifies especially that these products are not intended for self-care by consumers.
By following the order and delivery procedure, it is not possible to deliver KAN products to a Dutch consumer via the NatuurApotheek, they are prescribed to patients solely by professionals.
As already indicated in an earlier response from us it is the main intention of the NatuurApotheek to work within the framework of the law and provide safe products, both food and medicines''.
The NatuurApotheek is actively committed to make clear to NVWA (and IGZ - the Health Inspectorate) that there are arguments to bring a.o. KAN products not on the market as food supplements, thus limiting her own commercial trading business in the interest of good phytotherapy and to prevent misuse of these products by patients. The NVWA accepted the position of the NatuurApotheek on KAN products and therefore has implicitly indicated to see value in the proper use of phytotherapy.
During the existence of the NatuurApotheek and also in the decades and centuries before, phytotherapy has shown to be an extremely good and safe pharmacotherapy, provided of course being of the right quality and used by phytotherapists with sufficient knowledge and understanding of diagnosis and treatment.
Obviously, supporting individual course days concerning the application of herbs is not intended as an attempt to replace herbal educations. The KAN herbs day has been organized by OTCG for many years. It is not a new activity of this school. It is a way to inspire acupuncturists to study herbs and to become acquainted with a number of important formulas in advance. They begin with mild formulas and for them familiar TCM diagnoses.
If there are no efforts in various ways to have more doctors and therapists to study phytotherapy, in about 10-20 years there are no phytotherapists in the Netherlands anymore. Already for many years it is not possible anymore to study phytotherapy at university level in the Netherlands. My job is to get more people to such extent that they will study phytotherapy, so that more qualified phytotherapists can develop themselves. If that does not happen, the practice of phytotherapy in the Netherlands will slowly extinct and we will be entirely dependent on neighboring countries.
How to get in touch with us, and where to meet up with us?
You can meet us at educations in Chinese phytotherapy, western phytotherapy or orthomolecular educations, at conferences of professional associations in these areas during tours in the NatuurApotheek (every last Wednesday of the month), during the KEP meetings (Knowledge Exchange Program) which we specifically organize for our prescribers of phytotherapy and orthomolecular therapies, at symposia of educations which we sponsor e.g. KAN herbs- and the medicinal mushrooms symposium, in a personal video interview which we nowadays do with our familiar prescribers and where we make the video available to the Foundation Dong XI ( www.dongxioostwest.nl), or of course in a personal conversation with our pharmacist Edwin Lipperts (you can always call or email him to make a personal appointment).
With best regards,
Drs Edwin G. Lipperts, pharmacist / phytotherapist
Compensation of remedies supplied by the NatuurApotheek
“Fortunately” we have no understanding of insurance and fees. Everyone his profession. All the more knowledge we have gained of herbal medicines, orthomolecular remedies (vitamins, minerals and food supplements) and mycological remedies (remedies with ingredients from mushrooms). Please do not hesitate to contact us for any questions.
If you are looking for information on possible reimbursement by your health care provider of products supplied by us, you should contact your personal health care provider. If you have a good health insurance they can provide you with the correct information in a few moments. If in doubt about the qualities and/or the appropriate additional package of your health care provider it's probably time to start a small comparative study to the best health care provider for you.
Fortunately, there are parties who are specialized in this, so you do not have to compare the many hundreds of different policies with a thousand of different conditions. You can consult these independent parties which can compare your needs very well concerning your health insurance with all the different policies. They are:
These are independent parties who can well compare your health insurance with all the different policies that are there. On ZorgWijzer there is an overview page with reimbursements for alternative therapies offered per health insurance. View this page www.zorgwijzer.nl .
It is always worth the effort to file an objection if our remedies are not reimbursed. You can therefore use our letter 'Objections to no compensation' . By your objection, insurers are attended to the fact that meaningful pharmacotherapeutical treatments exist, but of which they have no knowledge until now. You can have your insurer to contact one of our pharmacists for more information.
If you want to talk with your health insurer with regard to the reimbursement of the remedies supplied by us, you can best take to heart our ' Advice for contact with health care provider ‘
Reimbursement of Thyreoïdum
When Thyreoïdum is provided by the NatuurApotheek, you will have to pay the invoice at the pharmacy and then submit the invoice to your insurer. Health insurers almost never reimburse this natural medicine prescribed by your doctor. The organization ‘Zorgverzekeraars Nederland (ZN)’ has made an exception for the (few) internists who prescribe natural thyroid powder and are willing to apply for an authorization for you with your health care provider. It is possible that some insurers will issue an authorization (and thus reimbursement). Reimbursement can only occur if an insurer is willing to make a contract with the NatuurApotheek. The NatuurApotheek has no special requirements for this, but unfortunately there are insurers who do not want to reimburse the special services of the NatuurApotheek for their patients and therefore will not conclude a contract with us. When an authorization has been issued, then Thyreoïdum will be reimbursed for a maximum period of one year. The authorization must be re-applied every year.
If you are insured with ‘Zilveren kruis’, a deviant act applies:
‘Zilveren kruis’ has no contract with the NatuurApotheek. The computer system of ‘Zilveren kruis’ does not recognize the fact that an authorization is valid and "throws out" the bill with the announcement: "Zilveren kruis does not reimburse any of the NatuurApotheek invoices". You should then file an official complaint through the department 'Complaints' and to have a personal complaint record opened. When that is done there is an adaptation (only for you and only for your complaint-record) in their computer indicating that the NatuurApotheek invoice submitted by you must be reimbursed manually. Therefore, you should send the invoice mentioning the record number to a special address (not the usual declarations department): CKC, Antwoordnummer 2241, 8000 VB Zwolle.