Pertussis is a vaccine-preventable disease that has made a global resurgence in the 21st century. Vaccine hesitancy remains a persistent barrier to achieving protective vaccination rates. Vaccine-hesitant individuals may be more likely to seek counsel with a naturopathic doctor. Seven more state legislatures have voted to license and/or regulate naturopathic doctors in the last decade, illustrating the growing popularity of naturopathic medicine in the present health care landscape. Still, the growth of naturopathic medicine, and its potential relationship to vaccine hesitancy, is worrisome. Naturopathic doctors can be advocates for immunization to vaccine-hesitant individuals, but ambivalence toward vaccines within the profession remains a public health concern.
We report cases of pertussis in a family treated in a naturopathic primary care clinic, where naturopathic doctors served as vaccine advocates to a vaccine-hesitant family.
Continued collaboration with public health programs and conventional clinicians is necessary to improve medical science training and vaccine advocacy in the field of naturopathic medicine.