Reclaiming health with homeopathy, hair analysis and plants

“Stop funding NHS Homeopathy, MPs urge”. But who are these MPs?

This is a blog entry by Carol Boye on February 27th, 2010. See her site here.

As predicted the media produced the expected snow – every national paper, every TV channel ran the story along similar lines: “Homeopathy should not be funded on the NHS, say MPs”.  The Mail and Telegraph ran stories on Sunday night, which was interesting since the Science and Technology Committee were adamant that details of the report should not be released to the public until after 11am Monday.  Bloggers had already written detailed posts directly quoting the report and published them at precisely 11am.  Leaked?  Surely not,

The Guardian at least waited till Monday to report: “Stop funding homeopathy, MPs urge”.

And so it went on.  Anyone reading the news might have imagined that there had been an in depth investigation of the matter in parliament.

But who are these MPs doing the urging, and how does the Science and Technology Committee work?

Continue reading “Stop funding NHS Homeopathy, MPs urge”. But who are these MPs?

Independent article – Homeopathy: Tinctures or a Trick of the Mind?

This week, a Commons committee declared that the NHS should stop funding homeopathy, describing its remedies as no better than a placebo. Jeremy Laurance hears what the patients think

Friday, 26 February 2010 The Independent

The Royal London Homeopathic Hospital may be under siege but the staff and patients remain relaxed. There has been no run on Gelsemium, the homeopathic remedy of choice for people paralysed by fear, in the pharmacy. Indeed, the only sign of trouble is the poster affixed to a pillar in the third floor waiting area alongside the stall selling Tick Tock redbush tea – the kind Precious Ramotswe drinks in The No 1 Ladies’ Detective Agency. “Save NHS homeopathy”, it says. Another poster urges supporters to join a lobby of parliament. Long before MPs from the cross party Commons committee on science and technology gave the thumbs down to homeopathy on Monday, people here knew what was coming. The remedies worked no better than a placebo, the committee said, and the NHS should cease funding.

It was a withering verdict but the hospital remains undaunted.

Continue reading Independent article – Homeopathy: Tinctures or a Trick of the Mind?

Significant Difference Between Aconite and Placebo

Swiss research shows significant distinction between the homeopathic remedy Aconitum and placebo.
Here is news of a successful new study conducted in Switzerland by Piltan D, Rist L, Simões-Wüst P, Saller R (2009): Test of a homeopathic dilution of Aconitum napellus. A clinical, randomized, double-blind, controlled crossover study in healthy volunteers. Forschende Komplementärmedizin, 16:168-73.

The research has significantly demonstrated a distinction between the proving symptoms of Aconitum napellus 30c and a placebo. Published in an academic journal, it has found a clear difference between the reported short-term reactions of randomly selected healthy subjects towards Aconitum napellus C30 and towards placebo. The crossover design with intra-individual comparisons proved to be adequate to recognise the study preparations and for the statistical analysis of a small population sample.

To read the abstract, please click here.

Defend your Right to Choose Homeopathy

On 24th February 2010, H:MC21 (Homeopathy: Medicine for the 21st Century) will be lobbying Parliament. The Commons Science and Technology Committee has recently been preparing a report on the evidence for homeopathy, and in doing so they took oral evidence from self-proclaimed ‘experts’ who oppose homeopathy, but ignored the tens of thousands of people who use it.

In response to this report H:MC21 will be handing in a petition in the form of a declaration “Homeopathy Worked for Me”, signed by approximately 25,000 people, to highlight why they consider that homeopathy can play an important role in healthcare in this country, including in the NHS.

If you would like further information about the campaign and about homeopathy before the lobby, please look at H:MC21’s websites at www.hmc21.org and www.homeopathyworkedforme.org. Of particular interest are:

Halloween Science
This is a detailed critique of Ernst and Singh’s Trick or Treatment, and shows that it is anything but scientific.
It is available at: <http://www.hmc21.org/#/halloween-science/4535659799>

Evidence to the Commons Committee
This shows that the evidence based medicine approach is seriously flawed as a basis for assessing homeopathy.

Report on Selected Evidence to the Commons Committee
This looks at the evidence given by Ben Goldacre, Edzard Ernst and Tracey Brown (of Sense About Science), and shows how they contradict each other and even themselves.

Both are available at: <http://www.hmc21.org/#/cstc-submission/4537525955>.

Pilot survey of PCTs
This survey suggests that there are no checks on whether those making decisions about the provision of homeopathy in the NHS are competent to assess the evidence.
It is available at: < http://www.hmc21.org/#/pct-survey/4535660289>

Government Backs NHS Homeopathy

Dec 1, 2009: A wonderful day for British Homeopathy

Here follow the immortal words of Health Minister, Mike O’Brien: ‘We take the view that it is not our job to stop clinicians prescribing these medications if they feel they are appropriate.’ The Honorable Minister went on to say that cutting the (NHS) funding would be “illiberal” and “a denial of personal choice”. He also said there were a range of opinions amongst clinicians and scientists which could not be ignored.

This was after being grilled by the House of Commons Science and Technology Committee which comprised many people less than friendly to homeopathy such as Edzard Ernst, Ben Goldacre and Tracey Brown all of whom lambasted homeopathy in the hearing. But the Health minister hinted at the essential point: NHS homepathy is practised by trained doctors who have to take responsibility for what they do. That is the headline and the bottom line and the middle line and all the other lines in between. Mike O’Brien knew it and had the guts to say it in the face of massive negative publicity in the media. Bravo Minister!

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