John Walker's Electronic House

Homeopathy Apparently Doesn’t Work!

by on Jan.31, 2008, under Rants

Thanks to Tony who pointed me toward this wonderful news story:

NHS trusts ‘reject homoeopathy’

Here’s an excerpt:

“NHS primary care trusts are slashing funding for homoeopathic treatment amid debate about its efficacy and the drive to cuts costs, a study has suggested. More than a quarter have stopped or cut funding for such services, research by the GP magazine Pulse has found. The Royal London Homoeopathic Hospital, the country’s largest, confirms it has lost eight contracts in a year and referrals are down by 20%.”

Skip, skip, dance, dance.

It’s still utterly terrifying that qualified doctors – people with medical degrees – are falling for this woo-woo bullshit. And that they can come out with statements like,

“The homoeopathic hospitals provide a specialist service that has helped hundreds of thousands of NHS patients over the last 60 years and has extremely high levels of patient satisfaction. They are particularly well equipped to treat patients whose complex chronic health problems have not been effectively treated by conventional medicine.”

He somehow forgot to add, “We’ve never produced a scrap of evidence that anything we’ve done in those 60 years has had any effect beyond placebo and basic counselling,” but I’m sure the BBC just cut him off or something.

Don’t forget that homeopathy is deadly. Yes, it’s laughable, but it’s also vile and cruel, preying on those whose symptoms are imaginary, the frightened and dying, and those too stupid to know better. And it’s murderous, deliberately preventing people from taking effective medicines, such that they die because they drank a bottle of water. Nevermind how many conclusive studies come out proving it utter crap, we just go around and around the same pointless pole of stupidity.

9 Comments for this entry

  • Iain "DDude" Dawson

    The advantage of Homeopathy is that, just like a placebo, it can have a phcological effect. It does help, if the mind think it will, to relieve pain. But it is not treatment. Expecting to be protected by homeopathy, as with the Malaria victims in your link, is a sad situation brought on by missinformation. People need to be reassured that they should trust medicine, and that homeopathy is not a guarantee.

    Unless we are wrong, and are being brainwashed by an exclusive, westernised medical system which requiers us to put all our faith in the drugs that are produced, at a great profit to the industry, for western markets, by western workers.

    I am so confused…

  • NM

    “Unless we are wrong, and are being brainwashed by an exclusive, westernised medical system which requiers us to put all our faith in the drugs that are produced, at a great profit to the industry, for western markets, by western workers.”

    Iain, there’s nothing to be confused about. Homeopathy IS Western, by the way.

    Please put your hypothesis to the test: next time you have a major systemic bacteria infection, try some magicked-water, and then try some antibiotics. See which works.

  • John

    As Nick says, there is no confusion. There are rigidly tested treatments with proven efficacy that cure diseases. And there are bottles of water that do nothing whatsoever.

    That it is even a debate is what makes this whole thing so sickening.

  • Iain "DDude" Dawson

    I dont mean to sound like I am supporting homeopathy, which sucks, no doubt, and modern medicine is amazing. But what I am worried is that this could lead to a shut down of un-conventional research. I do believe that in a few generations, or maybe even a few decades, current medical pracctices will be obselete, and research is a noble cause to be funding. My comment was really there to add balance, because I am not a doctor. I don’t know medicine.

  • bob_arctor

    I don’t understand your argument. Why would research die out? New research is coming up all the time, and medicine is driving towards Evidence Based Practice. Capital letters for Important Policy.
    Which is why it’s about time the NHS threw out anything alternative.

    Some “current medical pratices” are dating back to the 1800s. Why would we throw out everything in a few decades?
    Things will change, but that is good. Progress.

  • NM

    If drugs companies stopped researching, then they’d have nothing new to patent, and they’d then go out of business. Don’t worry about that happening. And, indeed, if a drug company had found a way to prove Homeopathy works, it would have jumped at the chance to find a method and patent it, believe me. Don’t be caught by red herrings here – something is either proven to work or is not. There’s no such thing as “alternative” medicine. There’s medicine, whether it’s Western, Eastern, made from herbs or otherwise, and not-medicine, which doesn’t work, be it Western, Eastern, made from herbs or otherwise.

  • Iain "DDude" Dawson

    yeh. I think I am gonna have to concede defeat. It’s not ’til your arguments get challenged that you can find out what they really are. You guys make a better point, and mine just falls apart. Thanks.

  • Tedi Worrier

    The problem with Evidence Based Medicine is that it stifles innovation … no treatment for which there are no published literature means no medical breakthroughs EVER AGAIN!

    Consider the available evidence for Edward Jenner when he administered the first vaccination … or that supporting the first use of penicillin.

    What is apparent is that homeopathy “works” best when someone charges a shed-load of money to spend an hour listening to you rabbiting on … mailorder hemoeopathy is fraudulent, in my opinion. What passes as homeopathy used to be called COUNSELLING and in the good old days was freely available from your best friend, pub landlord (maybe not entirely free) or even your vicar, priest or imam (?)
    The placebo effect is well documented and requires charisma to work best, so too are the power of positive thinking … and the even more powerful negative thinking.
    A person who charges money for such is called a con-artist … doing it for free invites either sainthood or martyrdom

  • John

    But surely new medicines are introduced all the time via the recognised testing procedures, involving double-blind placebo tests to ensure their efficacy?

    So new, innovative treatments receive this testing, the resulting literature is published, and the breakthroughs are achieved, no?

    We know this to be true with regard to the various treatments for HIV/AIDS, which now mean most people with HIV lead near-regular lives, compared to the death sentence it was twenty years ago. These drugs weren’t plopped into doctor’s offices without rigorous testing. But they would seem one of the most significant medical breakthroughs in recent years.

    Oh, and of course there’s the rather significant fact that homeopathy has been proven utterly ineffective numerous times, and by the same logic should have been rejected many years ago.