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Humanists UK calls for an end to NHS homeopathy funding in the west of England

Humanists UK has responded to a joint consultation held by the Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) for Bristol, North Somerset, and South Gloucestershire, calling for an end to the funding of homeopathic treatments on the NHS. This consultation follows a similar one held by the CCG in the summer of 2017, and the recommendation of the Board of NHS England in November that not only should prescriptions for homeopathic treatments be ended across NHS primary care, but that the treatment should be ‘blacklisted’ from being provided by the NHS at all.

CCGs are statutory NHS bodies, mostly made up of local GPs, who are responsible for the planning and commissioning of health care service in local areas. Bristol, North Somerset and South Gloucestershire is now the only CCG in England that still provides homeopathic remedies through the Portland Centre for Integrative Medicine (PCIM).

In April this year, the Royal London Hospital for Integrated Medicine (formerly the Royal London Homeopathic Hospital) announced that it will stop providing NHS-funded homeopathic treatments. This represented the bulk of remaining state spending on homeopathy.

Humanists UK’s Campaigns Officer Rachel Taggart-Ryan commented, ‘We are pleased the CCG for Bristol, North Somerset, and South Gloucestershire is pushing ahead with plans to defund homeopathy. This would bring the CCG into line with the recommendations of the Board of NHS England and the House of Commons Science and Technology Committee which have both stated that there is no evidence that homeopathy is effective above the level of a placebo and is thus a scandalous waste of scarce NHS resources.

‘Now that the Royal London Hospital for Integrated Medicine has ceased to provide such treatments we can foresee a time when state-funded medicine in this area will be led by evidence-based principles.’

Notes

For further comment or information, please contact Rachel Taggart-Ryan on rachel@humanism.org.uk or 07951 176 245.

Read Humanists UK’s response to the consultation here: https://humanism.org.uk/wp-content/uploads/2018-03-05-RTR-Bristol-North-Somerset-and-South-Gloucestershire-CCGs-review-of-homeopathic-services-and-treatments.pdf

Read more about the consultation here: https://bnssgccg.nhs.uk/get-involved/surveys-and-consultations/reviewing-homeopathy-services/

Read more about Humanists UK’s campaign work on ‘complementary and alternative medicine’: https://humanism.org.uk/campaigns/public-ethical-issues/homeopathy/

At Humanists UK, we advance free thinking and promote humanism to create a tolerant society where rational thinking and kindness prevail. Our work brings non-religious people together to develop their own views, helping people be happier and more fulfilled in the one life we have. Through our ceremonies, education services, and community and campaigning work, we strive to create a fair and equal society for all.

Humanists UK recently changed its name from the British Humanist Association: https://humanism.org.uk/2017/05/22/bha-becomes-humanists-uk/

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