Russia and Homeopathy

The following article is about the meeting and discussion concerning Homeopathy that took place in the Public Chamber of Russia in Moscow on November 14th. Representatives of the Ministry of Healthcare, of the Academy of Sciences of Russia, of the Russian Parliament and of the National Medical Chamber and many other people took part in this discussion. The resolution of this meeting was totally in favour of Homeopathy. In Russia Homeopathy has made great advances in the recent years under also the influence of the International Academy of Classical Homeopathy, which is based on Alonnisos, Greece, Homeopathy has taken also advantage of the absence in Russia of strong lobbing from the part of western pharmaceutical multinationals. 

To Get Homeopathic Treatment Without Any Restrictions

Original article:

Experts announced the necessity of including an education in homeopathy in the schedule of professional medical training

Homeopathy is one of the methods of alternative medicine, which is totally appropriate for preventing and treating different diseases along with other methods of evidence-based medicine. This was the conclusion of participants of a round table “Conventional Methods of Contemporary Healthcare”, which was concerned with problems concerning homeopathy. The event took place today in the Civic Chamber of the Russian Federation. The majority of the participants came to the conclusion that homeopathy, as well as the other methods of traditional medicine, should be extensively studied and taught to students of medical universities.

The discussions about the role and place of homeopathy in Russian healthcare were provoked at the start of the current year, when the known memorandum by the Commission on Pseudoscience and Research Fraud of RAS (translator`s note: Russian Academy of Science) was published. The Commission recommended The Ministry of Healthcare to abandon homeopathy and not to use it in the state medical facilities, and also to inform the patients ‘factually’ about this method of treatment and not to exaggerate its possibilities. Amongst other matters it included the issue of correct labels on homeopathic remedies that must announce that it does not contain any active ingredient and does not show any clinical effectiveness.

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In the survey: 49% of Russians have used homeopathic remedies

“Today, after the memorandum had been published several months ago, and the dust had settled, it is the right time to turn back to the subject and to hold a cool discussion on the possibilities of homeopathy and its application”, – announced Nicolay Dayches, the Director of the Federal Research and Clinical Center of Otolaryngology –  Head and Neck Surgery, the Chief External Otolaryngologist of The Ministry of Healthcare of the Russian Federation, Corresponding member of RAS, Professor. According to him many medical doctors apply homeopathy successfully together with the methods of “classical” medicine, and the scandal about this very method was “so blown up” that the Office of Prosecutor General of the Russian Federation became involved to such an extent that the Statuary Compliance in this field had to be checked.

The dust has now settled, and it is the right time to turn back to the subject and to hold a cool discussion on the possibilities of homeopathy and its application.

He was supported by his colleague, the representative of RAS, Academician, Professor, the member of that very Commission on Pseudoscience and Research Fraud, Sergey Kolesnikov. According to him, the introduction of the memorandum was not appropriate: this important document was signed without any face-to-face meeting and voting; meanwhile, there were only a few persons with any relation to medicine out of a total of sixty signees signers. “But this is not the most important observation, – Sergey Kolesnikov pointed out. – The main thing is that It is not correct to come to a conclusion about the absence of reliable scientific evidence, while research in the field is being conducted and there are positive results in the clinical application of the method”.

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“The homeopathic remedies that we have on the market have passed all the necessary checking procedures, they are officially registered and allowed for use”, said Irina Samylina, the Head of Department of Pharmacognosy of Sechenov University, Corresponding member of RAS, Professor (once again the member of the Commission on Pseudoscince and Research Fraud of RAS). According to her, the students of many medical universities come to know about the application of homeopathy along with herbal medicine. Notwithstanding, the professor and many of her colleagues considered the level of the training should be enhanced.

Medical doctor and homeopathic practitioner Maria Tomkevich spoke about the stance of WHO, which recognizes and supports the development of homeopathy. “As a medical speciality homeopathy is recognized in 80 countries, – Tomkevich said. – Its status differs: in some countries the application of homeopathy is being included in compulsory (statutory) health insurance, in other countries the treatment is paid by the patients themselves or is covered by their private medical insurance”. According to Tomkevich, blaming homeopathy for being applied without having sufficient clinical trials database is unjustified. There have already been published more than 100 large scale studies on the application of homeopathy in cases of a wide range of pathologies, including even hardly manageable dangerous infectious diseases like HIV, tuberculosis, Dengue fever and also a severe autoimmune disease – rheumatoid arthritis.

The discussion in Civic Chamber was not one-sided. In the name of the Commission on Pseudoscience and Research Fraud spoke Rostislav Polyschuk, Scientific Secretary of the Commission, Dr. Habil. in Physics and Mathematics. The Russian community of supporters of evidence based (classical) medicine was represented by a medical doctor, neurologist Pavel Brand, who remarked that nobody calls for absolute prohibition of homeopathy, because there are a lot of supporters of the method among patients, but its application must be regulated. As an example he gave India, where homeopathy as well as ayurvedic medicine are formed into separate specialities, which are regulated by a particular ministry.

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However, other experts believe that effectiveness of homeopathy increases if homeopathic methods are combined with other methods. “We should widen the competencies while training medical doctors, we should teach them homeopathy both in medical universities and other auxiliary ongoing medical education”, – considers Lidia Ilyenko, a famous pediatrician and neonatologist, Professor, Dean of Moscovite Faculty of Pirogov Russian National Research Medical University (RNRMU). As she told many of her colleagues, each patient is a unique individual, and it’s not possible to treat everybody the same way, strictly following instructions and standards. Using a combination of methods by well-trained, qualified medical doctors will significantly increase the effectiveness of the treatment, – as Ilyenko pointed out.

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