Drug Company Guilty of Fraud - Reuters
agreed to plead guilty to misdemeanour criminal charges and pay $3 billion
(1.9 billion pounds) to settle what government officials on Monday described
as the largest case of healthcare fraud in U.S. history.
The agreement, which still needs court approval, would resolve allegations
that the British drugmaker broke U.S. laws in the marketing and development
of Safe Medicine is Ending
- The Independent
The world is entering an era where injuries as common as a child's scratched
knee could kill, where patients entering hospital gamble with their lives
and where routine operations such as a hip replacement become too dangerous
to carry out, the head of the World Health Organisation (WHO) has warned.
There is a global crisis in antibiotics caused by rapidly evolving
resistance among microbes responsible for common infections that threaten to
turn them into untreatable diseases, said Margaret Chan, director general of
the WHO. She said that every antibiotic ever developed was at risk of
"A post-antibiotic era means, in effect, an end to modern medicine as we
know it." She called for measures to tackle the threat by doctors
prescribing antibiotics appropriately, patients following their treatment
and restrictions on the use of antibiotics in animals.
Swiss Government recommends Homeopathy
- Huffington Post
The Swiss government has a long and widely-respected history of neutrality,
and has just
affirmed that homeopathic treatment is both effective and cost-effective and
that homeopathic treatment should be reimbursed by Switzerland's national
health insurance program.
In late 2011, the Swiss government's
report on homeopathic medicine represents the most comprehensive evaluation
of homeopathic medicine ever written by a government and
was just published in book form in English (Bornhoft and Matthiessen, 2011).
The Swiss government's
inquiry into homeopathy and complementary and alternative (CAM) treatments
resulted from the high demand and widespread use of alternatives to
conventional medicine in Switzerland, not only from consumers but from physicians as well.
treat Laminitis - theHorse
Acupuncture is a relatively simple treatment option veterinarians and horse
owners consider for a variety of equine ailments, but little scientific
evidence of its efficacy exists--particularly in regards to treating
laminitis. Lisa Lancaster, MSc, PhD, DVM, of Lancaster Veterinary Services,
in Denver, Colo., explored how this complementary therapy can be used as
part of a multimodal approach to treating laminitis at the 6th International
Equine Conference on Laminitis and Diseases of the Foot, held Oct. 28-31 in
West Palm Beach, Fla.
In Lancaster's experience, clinicians or horse owners typically see a
positive response after two to three acupuncture treatments; but as with any
treatment method, it's not going to work 100% of the time. "Acupuncture can
be used in conjunction with standard protocols, both medical and surgical,"
she concluded. "The safety profile and lack of contraindications make
acupuncture worth trying in all laminitis patients."
Complementary therapies help Health Services
Some interesting reports arrived from
study lasting five years
has revealed that Canadian people who practice transcendental meditation
have lower health costs. The researchers say that this result could well
have a significant impact on policy decisions. With up to 70% of the total
expenditure on medical treatment in the US being taken up by 10% of the
population, any effect on that figure can have far reaching financial
According to a recent survey
by the American Hospital Association and the Samueli Institute, a non-profit
research group focusing on complementary medicine, 42 percent of the 714
hospitals that responded offered at least one such therapy in 2010, a
significant jump from just five years earlier, when 27 percent of hospitals
offered such treatments. Experts say hospitals are embracing these therapies
for many reasons, including a growing recognition that some integrative
therapies, as they’re also called, are very effective in some instances.
In France, research on
has shown that the annual cost to the Social Security System for homeopathic
treatment is 15% less than that of conventional treatment and the price of
the average course of homeopathic medicine is one third that of standard
Ouch - Back Pain
College of Medicine
Back pain is the biggest cause of absenteeism in the UK yet one in three
GPs is not able to offer patients the full treatments recommended by the
NICE (the National Institution for Clinical Excellence). A survey of GPs
by the College of Medicine today reveals that, despite acupuncture,
massage and manipulation being recommended in more serious cases, 32 per
cent had not actioned them. Yet guidelines have been in effect nearly 2
Malnutrition: another side effect of medicine? -
According to the Department of Health and Human Resources a
minimum of one prescription drug is being taken by 50% of Americans.
Nutritional deficiency is one of the possible side effects of taking
prescribed drugs, however, many people are totally unaware of this.
Chiropractic Tops Satisfaction Survey - Consumer
online survey in the US to say that
Chiropractic outperformed all other back-pain treatments. Prescribed
medication came second, but the method most people used (over-the-counter
medication) came twelfth out of twenty methods.
Healthcare workers use more Therapies -
Health care workers in the USA use complementary and alternative medicine,
at a rate greater than the general public's, new research shows... Overall,
76% of healthcare workers reported having used at least one complementary
therapy in the past year compared with 63% of the general population.
Back, neck or joint pain were the most commonly reported health
least common reason was that traditional medical care in the USA
was too expensive.
Fraud' is under the microscope. -
The Guardian reports that perhaps “scientists are no more trustworthy than
restaurant managers or athletes. Restaurant kitchens are checked because
some of them are dirty. Athletes are drug-tested because some of them cheat.
Old people's homes, hospitals and centres for the disabled are subjected to
random inspections. But oh-so-lofty scientists plough on unperturbed..."
In the meantime, the
new College of Medicine has been born from ashes of Prince Charles's
holistic health charity. It aims to raise the acceptance of "an
integrated approach to health" among doctors, politicians and the public by
running courses and publishing books, journals and films. Doctors who
endorse integrated medicine believe it improves patients' wellbeing by
considering their beliefs and personal circumstances and helping them look
after their own health.
interesting choice of name -
it aims to
what good medicine means"...
resistance grows in horses too - The Horse
While parasite resistance is currently a hot topic in the
equine community, so is antimicrobial resistance. The growth in
antibiotic-resistant bacteria since the drugs become commonplace in the
1930s and '40s is "sobering."
"...antimicrobial drugs should be used with caution and only in cases with
an appropriate need for treatment."
Conventional Doctors Using Unconventional Medicine -
A new study from from Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center (BIDMC) and
Harvard Medical School researchers found one in 30 American have been
referred for non-traditional therapies by their health-care provider. This 3
percent represents more than 6.3 million Americans.
The findings suggest physicians may be sending patients for mind, body
therapies as a last resort, when conventional treatment has failed.
"These data suggest that mind-body therapies have really become a mainstream
approach to care," adds Russell Phillips, MD, senior author on the study.
Prior research suggested that holistic treatments, while used by millions of
patients, were still on the fringe of mainstream medical care in America.
New research suggests that attitudes are changing.
More than a third of Americans use some form of complementary and
alternative medicine and that number continues to rise.
The World Health Organization reports that more than 70 percent of the
world's population uses holistic medicine as their primary form of
Clearly these figures show that holistic therapies are generally safe, and
are increasingly accepted as useful by doctors who are bound by their rules
to try 'modern medicine' first. It is telling that those referred are
'sicker' than those who choose it themselves - that is more vulnerable, so a
greater risk of going to law if the referral fails - so these doctors must
trust the therapy!
An apple a day... - Better Health Research
A study presented at the annual meeting of the Federation of American
Societies for Experimental Biology found that mature women who consumed
dried apples every day for a year experienced a 23 percent decrease in
low-density lipoprotein, otherwise known as bad cholesterol.
Herbal remedies and old wives tales...?
Homeopathy Works! -
A study found that allergy sufferers who were given homeopathic treatment
were ten times more likely to be cured than those given a dummy pill
Doctors should be more positive about the alternative medicine, which is the
only complementary therapy available on the NHS, the said researchers at Glasgow Homeopathic Hospital, one of five specialist hospitals in Britain.
placebos work! -
Placebos can help patients feel better, even if they are
fully aware they are taking a sugar pill, according to an unusual experiment funded
by the National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine, which
aimed to better understand the "placebo effect."
researchers and practitioners have assumed that a placebo will not work if
the patient knows it is a placebo. This study shows
that this is not a safe assumption - other factors are at work: not chemical
and not simple suggestion or 'belief'...
Placebo Has No Standard! - Science Daily
In most drug trials, there are two groups of volunteers. One
group is given the active drug that is on trial and the other group are
given a placebo; a pill without the drug in it. Both groups need to believe
they are taking the drug so that human factors such as ‘belief’ or
‘expectation of results’ does not interfere with the trial.
However, Professor Beatrice Golomb, MD from the University of California,
San Diego School of Medicine, says: "There isn't anything actually known to
be physiologically inert. On top of that, there are no regulations about
what goes into placebos, and what is in them is often determined by the
makers of the drug being studied, who have a vested interest in the
Scientists were originally
warned about this problem 15 years ago through the high-credibility journal
Swine flu 'vastly overrated by World Health Organisation' -
The Council of Europe last night also accused the UN's health
arm of 'grave shortcomings' in the process that led it to declare a pandemic
last year. Plummeting confidence
in health advice could prove 'disastrous' in the event of a severe future
pandemic, parliamentarians at the Strasbourg-based senate said.
Predictions of a 'plague' that would wipe out up to
7.5million people allowed pharmaceutical companies to profit to the tune of
£4.6billion from the sale of vaccines alone.
Medicine Sales Booming
Even though economic conditions are far from good, the
sales of alternative medicines are rising. The Daily Mail, a UK newspaper
reported a study that revealed how the alternative medicine market in the UK
has grown by 18% in the last two years making it worth £213 million yearly.
In the next four years that is forecast to rise to £282 million.
What is especially interesting in the study is that the rise in purchases of
alternative medicines also includes categories that are not so well known
such as Indian ayurvedic medicine. The U.S. has also experienced a rise in
sales to the tune of $639 million but at a lower percentage rate of 10%.
Scientists Discover How Acupuncture Works
A team of university scientists have discovered how
acupuncture works to reduce or eliminate pain. Researchers at University of
Rochester Medical Center found that a molecule called adenosine is
responsible for the pain reducing effects as well as other benefits that
Adenosine is a natural compound found in the body that influences the sleep
pattern, heart health and possesses anti inflammatory qualities. It is also
known to be an effective natural pain killer by inhibiting nerve signals in
(It is also a vital part of DNA! - DS)
May 2010: Prince's
Foundation for Integrated Health Succeeds!
The Trustees feel that The Foundation has achieved its key
objective of promoting the use of integrated health. Since The Foundation
was set up in 1993, integrated health has become part of the mainstream
healthcare agenda, with over half a million patients using complementary
therapies each year, alongside conventional medicine.
From 2000-2007, at the request of the
Department of Health, The Foundation ran a regulation programme which
resulted in the creation, in 2008, of an independent self-regulatory body
for complementary therapy, called the Complementary and Natural Healthcare
On 1st April 2010, the Secretary of
State for Health announced plans to introduce statutory regulation for
herbalists and to consider the equivalent for acupuncture.
Placebos work with dogs! - Journal of Veterinary
When placebos are given to epileptic
dogs, they work well enough for the researchers to say that this effect
could interfere with the results of drug trials that assume there is no
other factor having any effect.
So... perhaps this means:
1. that natural therapies might work by methods different to normal
2. that normal medicines may not produce all the benefits seen
3. that lower cost & fewer side-effects may be good outcomes
4. that dogs receive TLC by this method and appreciate it - as we do too!
February 2010: Was
Swine Flu 'pandemic' a Fake? -
The Council of Europe‘s Parliamentary Assembly has
accepted that there is a need to launch an enquiry into
Swine Flu. This is due to serious allegations of gross
conflicts of interest of the experts who were advising the
World Health Organisation (WHO) to declare that swine flu
was a pandemic.
Of specific concern is the fact that out of the 20
members of the WHO Strategic Advisory Group of Experts
(SAGE), 11 of them are either linked to pharmaceutical
companies via their universities or have profited from work
they have done for them. Some of the scientists have
declared that they have interests in GlaxoSmithKline, which
as a manufacturer of Swine flu vaccines has been poised to
benefit the most due to the pandemic.
EU to fund research
- The Prince's Foundation for
Foundation for Integrated Health welcomes news that the EU is to put
€1.5 million into complementary medicine research over the next three
Professor George Lewith, who heads the CAM research unit at Southampton
University, is one of the project’s co-ordinators and a Foundation
Fellow. He said: 'More than 100 million people in Europe and the UK are
regular users of Complementary and Alternative Medicine. 'Yet compared
with conventional medicine, there is a lack of research, very little
funding and not enough scientific co-operation.'
Herbs 'can be natural pesticides' -
Common herbs and spices show promise as an
environmentally-friendly alternative to conventional
pesticides, scientists have told a major US
Some spice-based commercial products now being used
by farmers have already shown success in protecting
organic strawberry, spinach, and tomato crops
against destructive aphids and mites. An additional
advantage is that insects are less likely to evolve
resistance and these products are also safer for
farm workers, who are at high risk for pesticide
exposure, as well children using household
pesticides. This comes at a point when the Prime
Minister will be advised that common pesticides are
killing bees - who may be facing disastrous decline.
August 2009: Regulating more
complementary therapies - The
As a long standing campaigner for the regulation
of complementary therapies, The Prince's
Foundation for Integrated Health is delighted
that the government has announced a new
consultation on regulation of practitioners of
In line with previous consultations and surveys,
we are confident there will be overwhelming
support in favour of regulation.
Dr Michael Dixon, the Foundation’s medical
director, said: 'There is good evidence for
herbal medicine, acupuncture and Chinese
medicine in the treatment of some conditions
but, as in all healthcare, these therapies
require properly trained practitioners.
Vets revolt against annual
Last month, 33 veterinarians and medical doctors from around the world
signed a letter to the press. They were calling for an end to annual
vaccination. When they sign such a letter, they risk censure from their
professional organisations, which could end their careers. Other vets told
us they wanted to sign the letter, but feared for their businesses, or they
feared ‘upsetting’ their veterinary colleagues. The last time a group of
vets got together to sign a similar letter, which appeared in Veterinary
Times, they were threatened with being struck off. To see the letter,
Although it was sent to national newspapers, TV and radio, no-one published
Older people on 'drugs cocktail'
Nearly half of over 65s are
taking five or more drugs, and without regular reviews this may be both
dangerous and costly to the NHS, pharmacists say.
The Royal Pharmaceutical Society says
not only are lots of older people taking a "cocktail" of
drugs, many are not taking them as prescribed. Over 60% of
500 polled believed they may be suffering side-effects from
the drugs. Many of these drugs are on repeat prescriptions,
the society notes, and could have been prescribed for
conditions the patient no longer has.
Animal Welfare -
The welfare of animals is central to Soil Association organic principles.
most intensive agricultural systems, faster growing breeds that produce more
milk or meat tend to be used. As a result the welfare of some breeds has
been seriously compromised. This can put animals under excessive stress,
weaken their natural immune systems and increase reliance on antibiotics and
Organic farming is a holistic method of agriculture. Through a positive
management approach to health and welfare, farmers aim to prevent disease
from occurring on the farm. If disease does occur then organic farmers are
encouraged to use natural and complementary therapies. If these are not
appropriate then medicines, including antibiotics, may be used.
Read more at the
Back pain? NHS Chiropractic soon! - Daily Mail
Anyone with lower back pain for more than six weeks should be offered
acupuncture, chiropractic and exercise on the NHS, the health service
rationing body National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE)
said. It has backed widespread use of 'alternative' therapies for the first
Michael Dixon, medical director of The Prince's Foundation for Integrated
Health, said: "This is integrated healthcare in action. Now all patients
will be able to access proven complementary treatments as well as orthodox
medicine. That means real patient choice. Hopefully better outcomes in
primary care will obviate the need for more costly technological
interventions which can then be saved for those who need them." [our
Read more at NICE
Grant: Traditional Chinese Medicine - Medical News
King's College London successfully led a consortium bid for 995,100 euros of
EU funding for a ground-breaking research project that will play an
important role in the unification of Western and Chinese approaches to
Bad Science' - The Prince's Foundation for
Aggressive campaigning against complementary
therapies by scientists who should know better,
does patients a grave disservice.
That will be the message from Professor George
Lewith, Professor of Health Research at
Southampton University, speaking at a debate on
complementary medicine at Guy’s Hospital medical
school on 28th April 2009. He will say:
'We hear bigotry rather than science. More
science fiction than science fact. This misleads
doctors and their patients, and can harm the
Acupuncture is Scientifically Sound - The
The UK medical establishment is adopting acupuncture – the British Medical
Journal group is taking over publication of the journal Acupuncture In
Medicine. Its editor declared this is all thanks to scientific proof that it
However, the limited portion of acupuncture that doctors use may be amenable
to scientific research, but there is clearly more on offer from the
thousands of years of Chinese experience.
Patients call for NHS complementary therapy -
Complementary Therapy Assn.
A year-long pilot scheme in Northern Ireland has found
that complementary and alternative medicine (CAM) can offer significant
health improvements to NHS patients.
After receiving CAM treatments on referral from their GP,
81% of patients reported an improvement in their physical health and 79% in
their mental health. The majority of patients, 84%, directly linked
improvements in their health and wellbeing to the CAM treatment they had
received and 94% said they would recommend it to others with a similar
Pet Health Care Goes Holistic
- Washington Post
"Like many older
dogs, Buster the beagle suffers from a few health
problems. At 15, the dog has chronic sinusitis that
causes breathing trouble and can turn into
pneumonia, and torn ligaments lead to pain that can
affect his mobility, said owner Chris Shoulet.
told by several veterinarians that the dog
should be euthanized, the Bethesda resident
turned to holistic medicine to cure Buster's
ills. According to Shoulet, holistic treatments,
including acupuncture, have worked wonders for
her furry friend.
more info on Complementary Therapies for Pets in
January 2009: Mass Homeopathy Treatment Success - NaturalNews
An incredible 2.5 million people were treated in
Cuba with a homeopathic vaccine against Leptospirosis. The outbreak
of Leptospirosis is an annual occurrence following flooding in the
region due to hurricanes.
The results were that "within 2 weeks after
Aug 2007, the rising lines literally dropped off the chart
to ZERO - ten infections only!"
"Near-zero infections, zero deaths from leptospirosis after
"And in 2008, no deaths, infections less than 10 a month,"
said an amazed attendee of the conference as the charts were
being revealed on the stage.