01 September 2006


I listened to a story on the morning news about homeopathy. Apparently labelling is being changed to make it clearer what homeopathic products are and how they should be used. Unfortunately the new labelling will not state "This does not work."

A 'medicine' diluted to the point where it is unlikely that any molecules of the original medicinal ingredient exist in the substance, cannot qualify as a medicine. Numerous scientific studies have shown that the 'effect' of homeopathic medicine to be no greater than placebo.

The feature also pointed out that sales of homeopathic medicines are on the increase. This doesn't surprise me and indeed confirms the unscientific nature of homeopathy. At a time when trust in certain experts is at a low ebb, many people will have a tendency to reject the advice of scientists and make 'individual' decisions to opt instead for quackery. This is a dangerous and illogical meme. Current scientific understanding is a result of cumulative learning and rigorous testing. To reject that understanding is to reject valuable knowledge.

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