Skip to content. | Skip to navigation

European Coalition on Homeopathic & Anthroposophic Medicinal Products

Navigation

Following the debate: homeopathy and anthroposophic medicine

05 Oct 2017

Discussion in the media about homeopathy has been widespread and varied in recent months; in most cases strong attacks on homeopathy appear to base themselves on unreliable reports and studies supporting a critical view on homeopathy, rather than investigating in a scientific way the emerging and most up-to-date scientific debate around this topic. Looking behind the headlines, we provide a summary of recent stories on homeopathy that have been in the media both in and outside Europe – the good and the bad. 

 June

  • Cutting Edge Research in Homeopathy - The summer kicked off with ‘The best HRI conference yet’, proving that the highest quality scientific debate on homeopathy research is alive and vibrant, and determined to address the most burning issues facing homeopathy today.
  • In Germany, Ärzteblatt and DAZ reported on the results of a survey by BPI showing that homeopathy is recognised and trusted by patients, with more than 70% thinking insurance companies should reimburse the costs. In August, Dr Straub, CEO of Barmer, Germany’s second largest health insurance company, defended homeopathy, speaking of the low cost of the therapy and the need to support pluralism in medicine. Dr Straub confirmed that his organisation would continue to support it.
  • In an online scientific discussion in Austria, Professor Dr Frass of the Medical University of Vienna and Dr Aust investigated and debated the findings of five research studies on homeopathy, with interesting and positive results, while in Switzerland in the Neue Zürcher Zeitung, vet Marc Bär calls for unbiased scientific debate on the topic of homeopathy. In Germany, Martin Dinges, medical historian, explains why homeopathy faces such opposition.
  • Chemist & Druggist, a UK publication for pharmacists, published an article explaining the benefits of selling homeopathy in pharmacies.
  • Local media and the Stuttgarter Zeitung provided extensive coverage of the opening of a new laboratory at Wala  Heilmittel in Bad Boll, Germany, supported by local and national politicians.
  •  The American Institute of Homeopathy (AIH) issued a statement, providing an indepth analysis of the FDA’s data behind the alert about the safety of homeopathic teething products on the US market. AIH voiced serious concerns that the FDA may have overreacted when issuing warnings earlier this year. This story continues to receive ongoing media coverage.

 July

  •  In Spain, a scientific symposium on homeopathy in San Sebastián, attended by more than 160 health professionals, received extensive local and national press coverage, including in El Mundo, Gaceta Médica, Noticias de Guipúzcoa, Diario de noticias de Álava, Diario Vasco, Noticias de Álava, El Farmacéutico and Aragón Digital, as well as coverage in specialised media, Salud, Nutrición y Bienestar.
  •  National Health Service (NHS) England announced a consultation to restrict doctors prescribing certain ‘low value’ treatments, including homeopathy. This story received significant coverage in the UK media. Rachel Roberts from Homeopathy Research Institute argues convincingly against the initiative on radio; The Times quoted Cristal Sumner of the British Homeopathic Association; Dr Helen Beaumont, President of the Faculty of Homeopathy was interviewed on Radio 4 Today programme. The British Homeopathic Association has launched a campaign, which has already attracted over 10,000 signatures on their petition, seeking to prompt a government response.

August

  • The German pharmacy publication, Deutsche Apotheker Zeitung, published an overview of the German  industry for homeopathic and anthroposophic medicinal products, quoting ECHAMP market data and commenting on the quality and reliability of the companies involved. At the same time, Mechthild Heil, a CDU member of the German parliament (just reelected) argued that homeopathic medicines should be banned from sale in pharmacies; the industry body, Bundesverband der Arzneimittel Hersteller (BAH), confirmed the importance for patient safety of the continued distribution of these products through pharmacy channels.

  • In Pakistan, the Senate passed a resolution to appoint homeopathic doctors in all hospitals of capital.

September

  • In India, the Government announced the importance it attaches to research in homeopathy and has confirmed that it is collaborating with national and international institutes to establish itself as a leader in this field; the Minister of State for AYUSH also announced the opening of the first state of art virology laboratory to develop new drugs and technologies in homeopathy to combat emerging challenges of viral disease.
  •   In Sao Paolo, Brazil a new law will offer homeopathic treatment in state hospitals.
  •   Your Health Your Choice: Australian report campaign - Over 20,000 people have now signed the petition calling for a Senate Inquiry to investigate the flawed NHMRC Homeopathy Review and arguing against a proposal to remove homeopathic products from pharmacy shelves (King report). Media coverage on this campaign is gathering pace.
  •  Throughout the autumn, screenings of Just One Drop are taking place around Australia, US, New Zealand and UK, boosting awareness on homeopathy and attracting local media coverage; another new film, Magic Pills explores multiple media campaigns against homeopathy, seeking to shine a light on the scientists, doctors and practitioners working with homeopathy around the world.