Any Willing Quack. Liverpool PCT look to Commission Homeopathic Services

liverquack

I do not have a crystal ball. And I have no idea how the current farcical reorganisation of the NHS will end up.

But last September, I was worrying that the emphasis on competition would allow GP consortia to commission quack services – if there is patient demand then there appeared to be little stopping them doing this.

And now, in the middle of this mess we see Liverpool PCT formally invite ‘any willing provider’ to be accredited to  “deliver a Homeopathy Service from 8 August 2011”.

The tender says that it is “seeking to accredit suitably qualified and experienced Providers to deliver a Homeopathy Service”. The contract will be initially for 12 months, but that “there will be no guarantees of volume or payment in the contracts awarded”.

Currently Liverpool PCT offer a homeopathic clinic at the Old Swan Health Centre run by real doctors that have a desire to practice as if they were still in the 19th Century. I have been heavily critical of this clinic for offering superstitious forms of cancer treatment based on a mystical view of the properties of mistletoe. Called Iscador, the cancer injection is made by Weleda, more commonly known for their skin care products. Weleda is actually one of the commercial arms of the strange and mystical anthroposophical movement which is based on the superstitious teachings of Rudolf Steiner.

Weleda has a turnover of about $300 million per year. Just as Big Pharma has been supporting astroturf patient interest groups to lobby for specific treatments, so too has Weleda been supporting the North West Friends of Homeopathy. Some PCTs in the region, such as Wirral, have been threatening to cease funding homeopathy treatment, and the Friends have been lobbying hard to stop this happening.

So, what is going on here?

It is unclear to me who will be eligible to apply. Crucially, a lot will hinge on what the criteria are for “suitably qualified” providers. Homeopaths are delusional. They believe sugar pills can treat illness. A fully trained homeopath is not an expert, but just more efficient at delivering nonsense. If non-medically qualified homeopaths are able to apply, then not only are they delusional, but also tend to hold dangerous beliefs that will undermine public health messages and individual trust in medical professionals. You only need to look at prominent homeopaths’ blogs, such as Steve Scrutton’s (a registrar of the Alliance of Registered Homeopaths) to realise just how unethical and dangerous it would be to commission services from such people.

This should be a warning sign that something is badly wrong and that it could get worse as commercial pressures in the NHS drive commissioning towards cheap but ineffective services at the expense of us all. Yes, there will always be a minority that wish the NHS can provide the magic-du-jour treatment of their choice, but that does not mean that commissioning such services genuinely opens up patient choice.

Patient choice is meaningless unless it is based on genuine options.The option to be given pseudoscientific and superstitious alternatives to real treatments undermines the ability for medical professionals to be able to set out the evidence and rational for genuine treatment options. As I showed a few days ago, there is a hint in the data from a trial on homeopathy for cancer, that giving people the choice to descend into the world of magic medicine increases their propensity to decline genuine treatment options. That is a concern that needs investigating and understanding before we can even in the slightest way feel comfortable “integrating” quackery into public healthcare.

On this theme…

57 Comments on Any Willing Quack. Liverpool PCT look to Commission Homeopathic Services

  1. The service would have to be delivered by doctors. There are issues with lay homeopaths prescribing unlicensed medicines. If a PCT commissioned homeopathy services from a group involving lay homeopaths, it would be relatively easy to challenge the decision on the basis of lack of due diligence.

    I intend to submit a bid myself, offering radionics.

  2. Me and My Black Cat have been waiting for this happening.

    We have lots of goodies in The Spell Pantry that will do the trick. Failed spells that won’t work at all in much the same league as homeopathic nothingness.

    We are willing, qualified providers, and we will submit a bid too. You don’t stand a chance, Warhelmet.

    This, is end-stage Patient Choice so no doubt NICE will need to conform with government policy.

    This great country of ours is tilting over and no doubt the NHS will end up in a black hole.

  3. I’m willing, but luckily for the other people in Liverpool I understand homeopathy doesn’t work so my tender will be for £0, thereby saving the PCT the money they are going to waste on this.

  4. And if the patients demand and the majority of them are happy wigh what they get, it will be around a long time. A very long, long time. But hey, the main objective is the patients’ happiness and relief, right?

    Right?

      • If the patient’s health improves, that’s no illusion. I say if it works, do it. You know what quackery is? Throwing little (and not so little) pills at everything, from erectile dysfunction (which can be corrected by simply improving one’s diet and lifestyle and losing weight, which most won’t do because it’s just so much easier to take a pill) to depression (the causes of which remain even as the symptoms are treated, like a cold). The omniscience of allopathic medicince is a myth propagated by the medical establishment and funded in large part by the pharmaceutical industry, whose profit margins rely on us staying unhealthy.

      • @ophu

        You know what quackery is? Throwing little (and not so little) pills at everything…

        You do know what homoeopathy typically treats its patients with, don’t you?

  5. Make certain to close tightly both of your eyes to make certain you do not read any of the basic sciences research or the clinical studies on mistletoe…and make double-certain to swear under oath that you will try all of the most dangerous conventional medical treatments first BEFORE exploring anything else. Even though you swear to use only “proven” medical treatments, you will need to ignore all of the future studies that prove that your proven treatments are proven to be less effective than originally assumed and a lot more dangerous too. THAT pattern seem to be a bit recurrent in your medical paradigm…but ignore the man behind the curtain…

    Good…you are all certified ducks, like your fearless/clueless leader.

    • DUllman, I see again that you are deploying another of your typical tactics when you appear on these forums- when the questions get too difficult and too dangerous for you, you pop up with a post in a different thread so you can carry on as if there is not a lengthy train of unanswered questions following you everywhere you go.

      So, let’s bring one of those questions to this thread. If Liverpool PCT commissioned homeopathic services, should they offer homeopathy for treatment of HIV and AIDS instead of ARVs?

      Come on, Dana, grow a pair and actually stick around to test your rhetoric under a bit of detailed analysis. So far, all we have is the sound of yet more panicked whistling from you.

  6. So, Mr. Monkey…are you actually saying that patients who have been prescribed ARVs and who experience serious side effects from them, thereby leading them to stop taking these drugs, should not be alternatives? And please stop the misinformation on which you thrive that says “there is no evidence” that homeopathic medicines work.

    You “medical fundamentalists” have fascistic tendencies with desires to force medication onto people, disabling personal choice. You folks are very very scary people…

    BTW, it is interesting that Mr. Duck hasn’t reminded you that you should keep “on subject” (cancer in THIS article) or threaten deletion…but he only seems to do so when its serves his POV.

    It is further interesting that no one here seems familiar with the body of evidence and clinical experience for mistletoe. How convenient…

    • DUllman, I am not saying that. I see you are twisting the question a little to make answering it slightly safer for you and allowing you the chance to bluster a bit. Try again.

      You know full well that there are homeopaths who promote homeopathy as a straight alternative to ARVs regardless of whether individuals have tried ARVs and experienced side effects. What to do with that latter group of patients is a different issue (and before you claim there is a chink of opportunity there for you, no, allowing these people to be exploited by self-aggrandising homeopaths should never be an option).

      I will ask again, do you support the use of homeopathy explicitly as a first-line treatment as an alternative to ARVs?

      Let’s get you to answer this simple question once and for all in a public forum.

      In this thread, I asked a question entirely in tune with the topic of the thread. It was a derail elsewhere, but here it is on-topic because we are talking about the commissioning of magic sugar by a public body. I am asking you whether that magic sugar should be commissioned as an alternative to ARVs.

      Be that as it may, it’s LCN’s backyard and he can do what he likes.

  7. [taps microphone] Hello, is this thing on? I thought I heard whistling but even that’s gone quiet now.

    Dana, seems not to be able to hear the question properly. Let’s try again

    Do you support the use of homeopathy explicitly as a first-line treatment as an alternative to ARVs?

  8. I support the use of homeopathic medicines as a choice for people. It is THEIR decision, not mine, on whether they wish to use it as a first-line, second-line, or whatever-line in the treatment of whatever condition they have.

    Mr Monkey continues to ignore the wide body of basic science evidence, clinical trials, epidemiological studies, outcome studies, cost-effectiveness studies, and the overall body of evidence for homeopathic medicines. Obviously, Monkey’s ignorance and arrogance represents a bad and unscientific attitude…with large doses of irony that he thinks that he is a defender of good medicine or good science.

    • Anyone holding themselves out as an expert has a duty to provide the information that patients need to make properly informed decisions. Just saying “it’s the patient’s decision” is not a credible option here.

  9. Dana, when someone resorts to answering questions with the carefully evasive answers of the politician it is a screaming warning that they are trying to hide something. 

    As LCN said, answer the question you were asked not the one you wish you were asked. 

    Do you support the use of homeopathy explicitly as a first-line treatment as an alternative to ARVs?

    While we’re at it, do us a favour, old son, please stop repeating the tedious little strawman of yours about sceptics asserting there is “no evidence” for homeopathy. There is evidence, poor quality evidence and the appeal to an assortment of fallacies. You like your little strawman because if we actually claimed there was exactly zero evidence, it would open the door for use to cite all the usual crap of which Frass is a prime example. However, none of us say there is “no” evidence and so you keep saying it for us. It really is very boring. Please try to absorb this once and for all through that shiny Teflon pate of yours: evidence does exist that is used to support the case for homeopathy, but it’s all shit. Have I made that clear enough for even you to understand?

    Now, as we were saying, should homeopathy be used as first-line treatment for HIV and AIDS?

    It may come as a surprise to you, but I was once completely undecided about homeopathy, because I knew very little about it. But I looked into it and discovered that it is just a ridiculous fantasy based on lies, ignorance and stupidity. However, what really led me to loathe homeopathy was the behaviour of homeopaths. You may count yourself among the foremost examples of that behaviour in my view. Prevarication, distortion, dunderheadedness and careful half-truths all make a pretty unpleasant brew. But, try and answer a straight question with a straight answer, just like an honest person would.

  10. While we’re asking Dana Ullman some questions, let’s try this.

    Dana, you have a small operable malignant skin tumour on your arm. Which do you opt for surgery or homeopathy on its own? No third option. No combinations.

  11. He’s buggered off again. Trying to get him to stick to the matter at hand and permit examination of his rhetoric is like trying to grasp an eel.

  12. Fools and their money may be easily parted, but someone has to turn the parting into a consistent revenue stream.

    I think Dana is a busy man.

  13. Another quick point for the dull one to address is what is the mechanism of cure involved with homeopathy given that at the dilution ratios they use there is only water present. Am I better just drinking some?

    On that there are dangers associated with overdoses of homeopathic remedies despite your insistence earlier that there isn’t. We call them diabetes and drowning.

    I’m not being obtuse. Please tell me how water cures cancer or HIV?

  14. It does look like Dana’s gone away as the questions became to difficult to slither around.

    This questioning about ARVs, HIV and AIDS was active on Twitter, but I think he dried up there as well.

    Is he active on other forums at the moment, where these questions might follow him?

  15. cunning noir and cohorts.

    Why don’t you go back in the shadows where you came from and leave homeopathy alone and let the millions who use and prescribe it decide what is best, as they have for the last 200 years.
    There is ample evidence out there it works or are you saying 100 million people are wrong and you are right…
    What about the 1942 successful trials where homeopathic remedies where tested for treating terrible after affects of mustard gas .
    Your drivel is nothing but vituperative nonsense.
    Who are you to comment on this any way, you know bugger all about homeopathy really only lies and nonsense same as that garbled out by 2nd rate Magicians and comedians,shifty senseless science pressure groups, profane professors and half witted overdosers.

    • So, yet another supporter of homeopathy turns up to complain about criticism of homeopathy who immediately deploys a sequence of logical fallacies and cites evidence that either does not exist or has been woefully misrepresented.

      Let me predict that mandale will further conform to the usual patter by either failing to return or returning but failing to address the substantive issues.

      For the record, let me just pint out that 100 million people can be wrong. Mandale, millions of Aztecs over hundreds of years were firmly convinced of the need to perform human sacrifice in order to ensure that the Sun rose. Were they right to hold that belief or could they have been wrong despite the antiquity and popularity of that belief in their society?

  16. Beginning to look like mandale is another one-hit wonder or, perhaps, one-hit blunder.

    It’s such a pity. They shoot their little bolts of stupid the bugger off without seeing where they land.

    And it would be so much more interesting if they didn’t just use the same old fallacies of popularity, antiquity and “it worked for me”. It’s actually rather sad that they think these are such devastatingly clever arguments to put.

  17. My comment was directed to the foul mouthed deluded organ grinder but looks like the monkeys are getting excited.
    To the first reply;
    Google the` homeopathic mustard gas trials 1942` Go on- do some proper and meaningfull research, it is not difficult.
    The answer to your 2nd comment is; are you drunk or what.

    To the second reply;
    The ASA are far too busy dealing with the deluge of skeptic lies and innuendo perpetrated by the detractors of Homeopathy.
    I don`t doubt there is some poor trials- the trouble is I think you have been listening too much to senseless about science or some such phonies .

    These columns seems to work on the basis of spiteful and bitter provocation which feels like a cacophony of drunken rants.
    This savage and disgusting diatribe against homeopathy comes from self interest and ignorance.
    The general public should now what you lot are up to and decide for themselves what is best for them.

    Finally- regarding the Liverpool PCT –good on them. This looks like it follows the successful partnering trial of complementary medicine in connection with two health centre’s in N Ireland.

  18. OK. I said, “Let me predict that mandale will further conform to the usual patter by either failing to return or returning but failing to address the substantive issues.”

    mandale chose option 2.

    mandale, answer a couple of simple questions:

    1. Why are Argument from Antiquity, Arguments from Popularity and Post Hoc Ergo Propter Hoc each a form of logical fallacy?

    2. Which parts of your first post here represent which fallacy?

    So far, you have gone straight from illogical arguments to simple insults. It’s hardly an appealing picture. As I have just said, it would be more interesting if a supporter of homeopathy produced something other than these same silly viewpoints, but I have learned that you all fit the same mould.

    But, here’s your chance to show an ability at independent thought. Answer my questions.

  19. While we’re asking mandale questions, as far as I can parse his/her replies I think that in response to me saying;

    Mandale, millions of Aztecs over hundreds of years were firmly convinced of the need to perform human sacrifice in order to ensure that the Sun rose. Were they right to hold that belief or could they have been wrong despite the antiquity and popularity of that belief in their society?

    mandale replied;

    are you drunk or what.

    So, that really does ly that mandale cannot answer the questions I posed;

    1. Why are Argument from Antiquity, Arguments from Popularity and Post Hoc Ergo Propter Hoc each a form of logical fallacy?

    2. Which parts of your first post here represent which fallacy?

    mandale, I have given you some chances to show that you understand. So far you have failed to avail yourself of them and have resorted to tedious insults. I’ll give you one more chance before I simply conclude that you cannot answer the questions, are unwilling to reflect meaningfully and critically on your beliefs, but are too stubborn to admit that and draw the obvious conclusion that we are right and you are just plain wrong.

  20. Monkey
    You are really very funny and must have your head up your arse at times.
    Arguments and discussions surrounding homeopathic efficacy is the issue on trial here.
    Not comparing Aztecs worship to patients of this noble, safe, natural and considered medicine (no post hoc I mean).
    I do have respect for antiquity, believe me. As I do for Homeopathy.
    Monkey I have fed you just a tit bit of the many many trials and information I have, this is the first trial that came to mind. This trial to me strikes a relevance and need to the time and nature of the threat and the government may have seriously considered using Homeopathy. The forementioned situation appears similar to the health threats in Cuba and possibly around the world don`t you think.
    Monkey you really must read the last 2 paragraphs (abstracts below) because you do not seem to have taken this in feel free to pass the word around.

    Mustard gas trials 1942
    the efficacy of Rhus-tox as a treatment was ‘definitely established’ (X2 = 7.04), especially when the results from series 1 and 2 were combined (X2 = 11.78), and the preventive efficacy of Mustard gas was ‘confirmed’ (X2 = 10.39).
    the London mustard gas trials contained many of the methodological safeguards and requirements that would eventually be expected in clinical trials. These include concealed randomization to treatment or control, blinded dual evaluation of outcomes, and independent statistical testing.

    You must be gobsmacked !!! you never heard this one bought up down at the flying pig.

    This makes you look like a bit silly monkey.
    Give Lewis a bollocking as he is ducking for cover come to think of it he is probably picketing the Liverpool PCT.

    Leave homeopathy alone Lewis you phoney

    And finally- what happened to the missing successful homeopathic trials in the Lancet, fraudulent analysis In 2005.?

    Oh, I must stop know I have found yet more success for homeopathy regarding serious conditions and relieving peoples dreadful suffering the list goes on monkey

    I rest my case m`lud
    Now I am going to land up on both feet in a safe place .

    Sorry I can`t see you down the Flying Pig for a free drink monkey.

    If you don`t come back to me Monkey and acknowledge the successful trial of mustard gas and the answer to the missing lancet trials- I will now I am right and you are wrong.
    FACTUM PACTUM

  21. mandale, I did not ask you for a display of ranting and frothing, I asked you for answers to some straightforward questions.

    Here they are again;

    Mandale, millions of Aztecs over hundreds of years were firmly convinced of the need to perform human sacrifice in order to ensure that the Sun rose. Were they right to hold that belief or could they have been wrong despite the antiquity and popularity of that belief in their society?

    Why are Argument from Antiquity, Arguments from Popularity and Post Hoc Ergo Propter Hoc each a form of logical fallacy?

    Which parts of your first post here represent which fallacy?

    Explain the problems with the mustard gas trials as described. That would show you have the ability to critique trial methodologies and results.

    Just to be clear, I know what the quote about the mustard gas trials says. I have read it. What I want you to do is demonstrate an ability that is greater than a facility with cutting and pasting and actually expend a little intellectual effort by showing us that you understand the problems with these trials. This is not a difficult nor a trick question, but I’m afraid to say that your pattern of behaviour is one we have seen repeatedly: we beat the argument to death with a stick and the homeopath pops right back up again and pretends it never happened. This is the tactic of Monty Python’s Black Knight. It is boring and disingenuous. I am sufficiently tired of it that I try to avoid the opportunity for it to be deployed.

    Answer each question in turn. Simply and directly. No frothing, ranting or childish vituperation, please. It would be nice to see a fan of homeopathy carefully and calmly engaging in a discussion and abiding by the logical conclusions. I’ve been doing this for nearly 10 years, perhaps you will be the first.

    It is not clear by what you mean when you say;

    what happened to the missing successful homeopathic trials in the Lancet, fraudulent analysis In 2005.?

    Perhaps you mean the fact that Shang et al did not explicitly report which trials they submitted to detailed analysis. Of course they corrected that omission when it was pointed out;

    http://www.thelancet.com/journals/lancet/article/PIIS0140-6736(05)67881-6/fulltext

    Although that has not prevented sugar pill retailers and advocates from claiming this clarification was never made.

    If you meant something else by your comment then you will need to make yourself clear.

  22. Monkey, whats all this, I didn`t want a high school thesis on human psychology I just wanted a straight acknowledgement regarding the facts I had made That is all
    The fact is Homeopathy has a long history of clinical success. Patients use homeopathy where they can see for themselves its effectiveness in healing and perhaps to avoid the side effects drugs. Whoops!!
    I t is ridiculous and insulting to imply that homeopathic patients, doctors, nurses and NHS trusts and the rest of the world are following a fallacy.
    The world wide use of homeopathy seems to be constantly under evaluation but is growing daily, used extensively in France and Germany, Brazil, you name it. Licensed in USA, Recognised by the WHO some fallacy that.
    Homeopathy was enshrined in the NHS charter (medical act) at inception as part of mainstream medicine and can never be withdrawn without the consent of parliament.
    The London trials of the mustard gas concluded in the summary the efficaciousness of homeopathy. These trials did not disprove homeopathy.
    Regarding the Lancet trials you omitted to acknowledge that the missing Shang papers did prove homeopathy effective in 6% of the trials as I understand it. This does not disprove homeopathy.
    By the way please advise me where it is possible to find the double blind RCT (side effects) relating to multiple drug use on a patient. This is to demonstrate that there is ” do no harm” to the patient.
    In fact this applies to all drugs where there are side effects I would have thought.

    You and your cohorts are targeting homeopathy simply because you believe there will never be a plausible scientific/physiology result. Good luck with that then, because the Homeopaths are getting closer..
    I should find a good lawyer if I were you. The charge is 10 years a serial lying antagonist m`lud.

  23. The fact is Homeopathy has a long history of clinical success.

    It has been used for sbout 200 years. There is no reliable evidence for it being successful. 

     Patients use homeopathy where they can see for themselves its effectiveness in healing and perhaps to avoid the side effects drugs. Whoops!!

    Whoops, indeed. You do like these fallacies. 

    I t is ridiculous and insulting to imply that homeopathic patients, doctors, nurses and NHS trusts and the rest of the world are following a fallacy.

    What would you have said  to the Aztec high priest?

    The world wide use of homeopathy seems to be constantly under evaluation but is growing daily, used extensively in France and Germany, Brazil, you name it. Licensed in USA,

    Ad populum…

     Recognised by the WHO some fallacy that.

    Not a fallacy. This one’s a falsehood. 

    Homeopathy was enshrined in the NHS charter (medical act) at inception as part of mainstream medicine and can never be withdrawn without the consent of parliament.

    From authority…

    The London trials of the mustard gas concluded in the summary the efficaciousness of homeopathy.

    You have been asked to explain the problems with those studies. You have ducked out of doing so. I’ll leave this challenge open and not give you the answers. 

    These trials did not disprove homeopathy.

    You do not understand how hypothesis testing works in trials. 

    Regarding the Lancet trials you omitted to acknowledge that the missing Shang papers did prove homeopathy effective in 6% of the trials as I understand it.

    You are wrong. 

    By the way please advise me where it is possible to find the double blind RCT (side effects) relating to multiple drug use on a patient.

    Don’t know. Their existence or otherwise is not germane to a discussion about the uselessness of homeopathy. 

    However, when you are working within a well-established body of scientific medicine your chances of making good clinical decisions are infinitely greater than when working with a useless therapy. 

     This is to demonstrate that there is ” do no harm” to the patient.
    In fact this applies to all drugs where there are side effects I would have thought.

    Not an excuse for giving sugar pills in the pretence of treating real disease. 

    You and your cohorts are targeting homeopathy simply because you believe there will never be a plausible scientific/physiology result.

    No we target homeopaths because the sight of lying scumbags exploiting people’s gullibility nauseates us. 

     Good luck with that then, because the Homeopaths are getting closer..

    That is plainly untrue. Even trials by homeopaths are shoeing it is no more than a placebo and placebo effects are small. 

    http://www.dcscience.net/?p=4615

     I should find a good lawyer if I were you. The charge is 10 years a serial lying antagonist m`lud.

     

    No lies. Just arguments that you cannot counter, but will not accept. 

    mandale, we get one chance on this planet. You have chosen to waste your chance believing a falsehood. This is very much to be regretted. 

  24. mandale, answer a specific question.

    Name a single disease or condition that homeopathy CANNOT treat. Just one will do for current purposes.

  25. Regarding the mustard gas trials –
    As I have said that the trials proved to me that the remedies in themselves proved efficacious. This is clear from the reviewer. The forensic anlyisis/hypothesis you refer to may be open to discussion and freedom of error.

    My hypothesis is a pragmatic one. There can be prejudice either way. The analysis can be interpreted differently with some trials.

    As I have said there are numerous other trials and i would add the following abstract.

    Robert Mathie said on 03 July 2009
    “Readers are advised to consult the websites of the British Homeopathic Association and the Faculty of Homeopathy (links are top right of this page) for a precise account of homeopathy and its context within the NHS. From these sites it will be clear, for example, that 44% of randomised controlled trials in homeopathy have reported positive effects, and only 7% have been negative. These data are similar to the findings of a comprehensive meta-analysis of placebo-controlled trials of homeopathy (Linde et al., Lancet 1997; vol 350: pp834–43), in which 48% of trials were positive.

    It should also be noted that different homeopathic remedies and different dilutions of the same remedy have been distinguished from each other using Raman and infrared spectroscopy, even though all should theoretically contain nothing but water (Rao et al., Homeopathy 2007; vol 96: pp175–182). Such findings may relate to complex processes such as the formation, during succussion, of colloidal nanobubbles that could contain the remedy source material.

    The cost of homeopathy to the National Health Service is minuscule. Recent figures show that the NHS spent £12 million on homeopathy over a three-year period from 2005. £4 million a year for homeopathy (equating to 6 pence per annum per head of the British population) compares more than favourably to the amount the NHS spends each year on management consultants for example (approx. £320 million) or on treating in-patients with adverse reactions to conventional drugs (approx. £460 million)”.

    Let me tell you about the trials at the R L H H in 1854 when there was a cholera outbreak.

    “Dr Macloughlin, one of the medical inspectors appointed by the General Board of Health, visited the wards, examined the cases under treatment, and watched their progress. His statement, addressed to Mr. Hugh Cameron, a member of the medical staff, was as follows “:
    “You are aware that I went to your hospital prepossessed against the homœopathic system, that you had in me in your camp an enemy rather than a friend… and I need not tell you that I have taken some pains to make myself acquainted with the rise, progress and medical treatment of cholera, and that I claim for myself some right to be able to recognise the disease, and to know something of what the medical treatment ought to be, and that there may, therefore, be no misapprehension about the cases saw in your hospital, I will add that, all I saw were true cases of cholera, in the various stages of the disease, and that I saw several cases which did well under your treatment which I have no hesitation in saying would have sunk under other. In conclusion I must repeat to you what I have already told you, and what I have told everyone whom I have conversed, that although in allopath by principle, education and practice yet were it the will of Providence to afflict me with cholera, and deprive me of the power of prescribing for myself, I would rather he in the hands of a homœopathic than; in allopathic adviser.”

    If I have interpret this correctly this board of health was the future G M C .And the hospital is the R L H H the same one the scumbag skeptics want to close down.

    What this report must have done to the skeptics then. It seems likely to me that this may have been the trigger factoros the key factor giving rise to the intransigence homeopathy has encountered ever since then from the inept G M C, part of the well established body of clinical science as you say..

    This well-established body of science that you stand by, well here are some facts:
    1-The Pharma rep Gwen Olson (on you tube ) categorically states that anti depressants are no better than Placebo!!!!
    2- Further Gwen Olsen has categorically stated that big pharma is not in the business of health and are over medicating children. Also adults now according to the recent article in the daily mail at what cost?
    3- Then to cap it all we can see the horrendous list of drugs that have been withdrawn in USA and pharma has paid out billions of dollars in law suits. What has happened here?
    4-What happened with the trials of these medicines?
    5-The cost of these pharma`s placebos for depression must be astronomical to the NHS, probably outstripping the cost of Homeopathy.
    6-There have been trials carried out on unsuspecting 5 year olds in Africa
    7-Talking of costs how is it that Pharma can charge the NHS £1000 for a glass of salted water…

    In answer to your last two paragraphs
    mandale, we get one chance on this planet. You have chosen to waste your chance believing a falsehood. This is very much to be regretted.
    Monkey I am using my chance to belive in a truthood; health management and not disease management. .
    You are clearly deluded and led astray by the dark forces of skeptic skullduggery. When you sit your grandchildren on your knee you can tell them all about your shady skullduggery….

    mandale, answer a specific question.
    Name a single disease or condition that homeopathy CANNOT treat. Just one will do for current purposes.
    Sure monkey …its a disease …Extreme Paranoid Skeptic Neurosis. EPSN for short. Main symptoms are; (shadowy quack busters, profane professors including the immigrant scumbag, shifty science pressure group, second rate magicians’ and comedians and half wit overdosers.)
    There is simply no hope if homeopaths can`t help. Perhaps you could consult a lying psychologist- then you can all bugger off together to somewhere far away. The farther the better.

    I will leave you with the following pastings downloaded from the web …ah spiritual nourishment..
    Public comments from website of Stephen Barret MD quackwatch. Who you must know well…
    From a Californian who runs seminars teaching people “how to reduce stress by finding their natural breathing pattern”:
    I am very open minded. I would use drugs, surgery whatever it takes . . . but I feel homeopathy has value and the word “fake” is counterproductive and judgemental. I feel you have not researched the many scholars around the globe that are researching the quantum biological perspective. A few key biophysicists are gaining knowledge that there are subatomic fields that interpenetrate and structure the molecular level. These fields can directly relate to how homeopathy works. YOU DO NOT NEED ANY MOLECULES OF THE SUBSTANCE IN THE REMEDY TO AFFECT THESE UNDERLYING FIELDS. A SUBATOMIC WAVE FIELD THAT IS CARRYED BY THE WATER OR SUGAR IN THE REMEDY IS INTERACTING WITH THE SUBATOMIC FIELDS UNDERLYING THE PHYSICAL MATTER OF THE PATIENT. The problem is our limited technology can only measure a limited band of the energy spectrum. WE ARE NOT THAT ADVANCED AS A CIVILISATION. JUST WATCH THE NEWS.
    From an unidentified homeopathic enthusiast:
    Homeopathy works and you simply are too narrow-minded to understand that this world is made up of more than the mere physical and chemical natures. You overlook the spiritual and the energetic. You are the quack.
    From a retired criminal investigator:
    Homeopathic practices tend to be from the biblical roots of good natural medicine. There are millions that will fight any intrusion on homeopathy and its tenets. God have mercy on the persecutors.
    From another homeopathic enthusiast:
    What a sad sorry piece of shit masquerading as science your article is. Which drug company are you a front for? Do you know how many people die each year as a result of prescribed “scientifically validated” drugs? How many people do you murder (sorry treat) each week? How it must irk you that homeopathy is making a huge resurgence worldwide and safely treating iatrogenic and “incurable” diseases. We must start a web site to encourage people to sue doctors and drug companies for harmful side effects, lying and murder. It will be a huge counter punch to established medical quackery.
    P.S. Oh I nearly forgot—FUCK YOU!!!!

    • Readers are advised to consult the websites of the British Homeopathic Association and the Faculty of Homeopathy (links are top right of this page) for a precise account of homeopathy and its context within the NHS. From these sites it will be clear, for example, that 44% of randomised controlled trials in homeopathy have reported positive effects, and only 7% have been negative. These data are similar to the findings of a comprehensive meta-analysis of placebo-controlled trials of homeopathy (Linde et al., Lancet 1997; vol 350: pp834–43), in which 48% of trials were positive.

      Actually, the remaining 49% of trials are also negative, because although the BHA describes them as “statistically non-conclusive” they show homoeopathy failing to perform significantly better than a comparator (usually placebo). The 7% of trials categorised as “negative” are those in which homoeopathy actually performed significantly worse than the comparator.

      And remember that these figures fail to take the issue of trial quality into account. Analyses carried out since 1997 (for example Linde et al‘s 1999 reanalysis of the data from their 1997 paper, or the 2005 shang et al paper) clearly show that higher quality studies show smaller effects for homoeopathy, with this tending towards zero for the best quality research.

      It should also be noted that different homeopathic remedies and different dilutions of the same remedy have been distinguished from each other using Raman and infrared spectroscopy, even though all should theoretically contain nothing but water (Rao et al., Homeopathy 2007; vol 96: pp175–182).

      ROFL (you’ll have to track down the text, and Rao’s response, to find out why).

      Let me tell you about the trials at the R L H H in 1854 when there was a cholera outbreak.

      Why do you think homoeopathy appeared to be so much more effective in the mid-19th century than it does today?

  26. I think mandale’s citing of Rao’s paper is the gem sitting in the middle of that rant.

    Even a dyed-in-the-wool supporter of homeopathy should find it easy to criticise and reject that piece of work. I have no problem applying asepticism to claims in conventional medicine. I have never yet seen a homeopath supporter apply even a hint of sceptical insight to the work of his brethren.

    It’s this inability to self-reflect that is the most striking feature of SCAMsters. The problem for them is that if they reject one part of their belief system on grounds of weak or negative evidence then the whole pack of cards would collapse.

    So, mandale, do what Mojo said. Describe to us the problems with Rao’s experiment. Do that you you will show yourself capable of holding one valid opinion about homeopathy.

    While we’re testing your abilities at self-reflection, let’s give you another challenge. You must come down on one side or the other of a divide in homeopathic opinion. Does ‘grafting’ work? Explain to us why homeopathic holders of the opposite opinion are wrong.

  27. I thought you all were seeing the lying phsci for a chemical cosh or something.

    I do not need to take the trouble to carry out a forensic examination of the aforementioned.This is on-going work.

    Watch this space and your backs. No sticky baums now, sorry bums.

    I am surprised you agree that homeopathy was effective in the past just as it is now. Timeless effective medicine that does no harm to the patient. Hang on a minute,I had better tell the medics…

  28. I am surprised you agree that homeopathy was effective in the past just as it is now. 

    You missed the joke and the point. Rhetorical humour is clearly lost on you, so let’s be tediously literal. Yes, its efficacy was the same in the past as it is now: zero. 

    Meanwhile, you have conformed to another pattern: avoidance of direct questions that have answers too dangerous to your fixed beliefs. 

    I repeat;

    Describe to us the problems with Rao’s experiment.

    Does ‘grafting’ work? Explain to us why homeopathic holders of the opposite opinion are wrong.

  29. @mandale

    I am surprised you agree that homeopathy was effective in the past just as it is now.

    I am not particularly surprised that you failed to understand the sentence “why do you think homoeopathy appeared to be so much more effective in the mid-19th century than it does today?”

    Timeless effective medicine that does no harm to the patient.

    But which also does no good.

  30. Your failure to acknowledge or answer the above established written fact regarding the successful treatment against Cholera in 1854 with Homeopathy stinks of INTRANGEGENCE.

    SCAMMERS beware- the homeopaths are getting closer.
    If i were you I would seek advice from the singed whippet regarding the wording of an apology before thing get out of hand.
    The answer you have given me indicating it did not work is a lying scam and will not bear up under srutiny.

  31. mandale, do you only post here when you’re drunk? You cannot possibly talk in the real world the way you write here.

    What “fact” are you drawing our attention to? The fact that some patients in a homeopathic hospital did nit die of cholera 150years ago? Only an idiot would try to draw any inferences from that observation. Oh, you did. I rest my case.

  32. Your failure to acknowledge or answer the above established written fact regarding the successful treatment against Cholera in 1854 with Homeopathy stinks of INTRANGEGENCE.

    Not being as bad as 19th century medicine is not the same as being a successful treatment.

    SCAMMERS beware- the homeopaths are getting closer.
    If i were you I would seek advice from the singed whippet regarding the wording of an apology before thing get out of hand.
    The answer you have given me indicating it did not work is a lying scam and will not bear up under srutiny.

    Would you like a nice cup of tea?

  33. mandale, you write like a petulant 9yr old.

    You have also not answered the questions.

    What “fact” are you drawing our attention to? The fact that some patients in a homeopathic hospital did nit die of cholera 150years ago?

  34. Guys, I think you are being totally unfair. Avinash Mandale is clearly a deeply disturbed individual and goading him like this is just cruel. From his barely coherent outbursts it is clear that he is on the verge of some sort of psychotic breakdown, and making fun of him is deeply irresponsible.

    Explicit, direct and indeed actionable threats such as “Watch this space and your backs” I think we can let slide for the time being in the interests of us all getting along.

    Please keep the informed discussion going, but leave poking the crazies (Benneth, Mandale etc.) out. It’s not big and it’s not clever.

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