Naturopathy moves towards Mainstream Medicine beginning 20th century


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As Naturopathy and Homeopathy had very good results, physicians took over some parts of the unorthodox medicine and hence tried to introduce it on the university level as well. The first hospital in Naturopathy was founded in Berlin in 1901. In 1905, Professor Ludwig Brieger was called to be the first professor for physical and diet healing methods at the Friedrich Wilhelm’s University in Berlin (Immanuel Krankenhaus Berlin. Naturheilkunde)[i]. By 23.5.1919 Prussia passed a bill to incorporate practical and theoretical naturopathy at all universities that means new chairs were created. By 1920 Prof Dr. med Franz Schöneberger was appointed the first chair in “General Naturopathy” at the Friedrich-Wilhelm’s University in Berlin (Immanuel Krankenhaus Berlin).


Under the Nazi regime in 1933 all lay healer organizations were united and in 1934 all pharmacies had to have the homeopathic pharmacopoeia in Germany.[ii] Lay healers were legalized by law as Heilpraktiker although the education of lay healers was prohibited in 1939.


Even though the Heilpraktiker was not a well-defined profession he needed to be state-approved. Part of the approval was the basics of anatomy, physiology and pathology.  He had to know his rights and duties and he could serve clients like a nurse with first aid, wound treatment, taking blood and giving injections. His fees were (and still is) determined in a table of charges!


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[i] Prof Brieger was professor for internal medicine and general therapy at the same university since 1890 (Immanuel Krankenhaus Berlin. Naturheilkunde).

[ii] Even today all pharmacies have to have the homeopathic pharmacopoeia!