Administering a Prescribed Substance by Inhalation


Under the Naturopathy Act, 2007, a naturopath may administer, by injection or inhalation, a prescribed substance.  The prescribed substances are listed in table 1 of the General Regulation.  

A naturopath can only perform this controlled act in accordance with any limitations outlined in the table, and if meeting the general requirements outlined on the About Controlled Acts page.

Any naturopath mixing, preparing, packaging or labeling two or more substances listed in table 1 of the General Regulation must do so in accordance with the standards of practice for compounding.

Additional Education and Training


A naturopath may only administer a substance by inhalation if they have met the Standard of Practice for Prescribing. That requires a member to successfully complete a College-approved course and an examination in Therapeutic Prescribing.  The College’s Naturopathic Doctor Registry includes information about whether a member has met this standard of practice.

What is Inhalation?


Ontario statutes do not define “inhalation”.   The College of Naturopaths of Ontario has interpreted inhalation to mean the administration of a substance listed in table 1 by way of a mask, nasal cannula or aerosol inhaler.  This is the only means by which a naturopath can administer a substance on table 1.

Any substance administered without one of these three devices is not considered administration of a substance in inhalation.  For example, a naturopath may ask a patient to inhale the steam of essential oils placed in hot water.  As this process does not require the use of any of the three specified devices, and does not use the substances listed in table 1, it does not constitute this controlled act.

Table 1


The following includes information in table 1 from the General Regulation.  Every precaution has been made to provide an accurate reproduction. In the case of a discrepancy, defer to the regulation.  Explanatory notes describe how the limitation should apply. These notes are for information purposes and do not constitute advice from the College of Naturopaths of Ontario.


 Drug  Limitation  Explanatory note
Acetylcysteine
No limitations specified.

Glutathione  No limitations specified.   
Ipratropium Bromide  Administered to a patient by a member in his or her office only in emergency circumstances.  In an emergency, administer a maximum daily dose of 0.5 mg but only after the member has administered Salbutamol to the patient.  This drug may only be administered in office in an emergency situation.  Its dosage is limited and may only be administered following the administration of salbutamol. 
Salbutamol  Administered to a patient by the member in his or her office only in emergency circumstances.  In an emergency, administer a maximum of two doses each dose 2.5 mg.  This drug may only be administered in office in an emergency situation.  Its dosage is limited as noted. 
Saline   No limitations specified.  
Therapeutic Oxygen   No limitations specified.  

For reference, see the General Regulation in the Resources section of the College’s website.