Current Status and Recognition of Homeopathy

Introduction

Samuel Hahnemann, who was originally trained as an allopathic physician, introduced homeopathy as a viable alternative to allopathic medicine. Since then, until the present day, homeopathy has spread around the globe.

Currently, homeopathy is recognised by the government of the following countries either as a system of medicine or as a medical specialty: Central and South America (Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Cuba, Ecuador, and Mexico), Asia (India, Pakistan, Sri Lanka) and Europe (Belgium, Bulgaria, Hungary, Lithuania, Portugal, Romania, Russia, United Kingdom).

In the following countries, homeopathy is integrated into the national health care system - Brazil, India, Mexico, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, United Kingdom.[1]

In the following countries homeopathy has a legal standing which is equivalent to conventional medicine - India, Pakistan and Sri Lanka.

 

Homeopathy in Europe

Homeopathy and the National Medical Policies/Associations

According to the European Committee report on Homeopathy 2007, The European Parliament has taken the position that homeopathy as well as other Branches of non-conventional medicines should be recognized. Its resolution of 29 May 1997 (A4 -0075/97) called on the European Commission:

  1. To start an initiative of recognising non conventional medicine and thus take steps to be the catalyst in establishing the relevant committees
  2. To conduct studies into safety and effectiveness as well as look into the areas where the relevant complementary modality is applied and to conduct a comparative study of some national legal models application to complementary and alternative practitioners.
  3. Non-conventional forms of medicine are to be divided into alternative where it replaces conventional and complementary where it complements conventional treatment. Research is to be carried out in non conventional medicine to discover what role it can play as preventive medicine as well as in offering an individualised and holistic approaches to health.[2]

Several National Medical Associations have recognized homeopathy as a therapeutic medical method.[3]

  • In Germany, there is an exam that doctors can take that gives them an additional homeopathic qualification that is recognised by a body called the Bundesärztekammer
  • In Germany doctors can obtain, an additional qualification called ‘Homöopathischer Arzt’ which is recognised by the Bundesärztekammer. There is an exam that needs to be taken before it is awarded.
  • A similar situation exists in Austria where the additional qualification ‘Homöopathie’ is recognized by the Österreichische Ärztekammer. In Austria, there is a qualification called ‘Homöopathie’ which is recognised by the body called Österreichische Ärztekammer.
  • In Latvia the Medical Association gave Homeopathy an official status in 1995.
  • The French Medical Association recognised homeopathy as an existing therapeutic method in 1997. It also stated that Homeopathic education should be taught in Universities and the diploma in Homeopathy should be awarded. It also recommended that medical undergraduates should be given systematic information on Homeopath.
  • In Switzerland, a subspecialty under the term of certificate of capacity in homeopathy” has been in place since 1998 in collaboration with the Swiss Medical Association FMH, for doctors holding a title of a current specialty such as General Medicine, Internal Medicine or Paediatrics.
  • In 2002 the Italian Medical Association (Federazione Nazionali degli Ordini dei Medici Chirughi e degli Odontoiatri or FNOMCeO) recognized homeopathy as a medical method and insisted on legislation in this field.
  • Both the British Medical Association and the British Medical Council have recommended incorporating familiarization courses on CAM into the medical undergraduate curriculum and setting up accredited postgraduate training.

Homeopathy Hospitals

In Europe, some hospitals provide homeopathic treatment in the outpatient’s department. This includes 7 physicians in Austria, 2 physicians in France, 5 Physicians in Germany, 2 physicians in Spain and also 2 physicians in Italy. In Paris France, St Jacques Hospital used to offer inpatient treatment until the year 2000. It now offers only outpatient homeopathic treatment. In Austria, at a hospital called KA Rudofstiftung, a neonatologist, Dr Bettina Baltacis reports about giving homeopathic treatment to neonates either in conjunction with Homeopathic treatment or as a stand-alone treatment. [4] This hospital is a conventional hospital that has homeopathic treatment offered in the neonatology ward

In Germany the Robert Bosch hospital in Stuttgard also used to offer homeopathic treatment from 1940 to 1973, but is now a hospital that offers conventional treatment. [5][6]

In Spain, the Homeopathic Institute and Hospital of San Jose which was opened in 1878 as a teaching and learning centre for homeopathy as well as care of the elderly with homeopathic therapeutics was restored to be a living museum of Homeopathy but its role as a hospital has not been restored. [7]

It can be said that Homeopathic hospitals seem to have ceased to exist in their original form but there is a possibility that doctors who have taken up homeopathy as a post graduate study can integrate homeopathy as was done in Austria at KA Rudfstiftung.

Homeopathy Studies in Europe

There are several universities in Europe that offer Homeopathic Education.

In France, Germany, Poland and Spain, homeopathy is offered at the university level. In other European countries, homeopathy is taught at lower institutions. A familiarization course in homeopathy for undergraduate medical students is compulsory in Germany and is being introduced in other European countries.

Homeopathy has had a form of legal recognition in some European countries. It is also well organised and there are self regulatory mechanisms in place. It also has a certain level of scientific credibility. It is now slowly being recognised as a potential asset to the health care system in Europe. Resolutions have been passed in Europe on Complementary and Alternative Medicine and it has been adopted by the European Parliament and also the Council of Europe. The EU has issued directives that make the Member states register Homeopathic Medicine and these are now included in the European Pharmacopeia.

Homeopathy in the United Kingdom

Homeopathy and the National Medical Policies/Associations

Homeopathy is available under the National Health Service (NHS) in the UK. This makes it one of two countries in the world to have homeopathy available under a national health scheme, the other country being New Zealand. The government of the United Kingdom gave official recognition to the Faculty of Homeopathy in the Faculty of Homeopathy Act. In this act, the Faculty of Homeopathy was set up to train and regulate Medical Homeopaths.

In the UK, common law allows anyone to practice any therapy as long as they do not make any claims to be a medical doctor. Homeopathy is self-governed by several Homeopathic organizations and In order to become a member of a professional organization, non-allopathic practitioners must be covered by insurance and adhere to the Code of Professional Ethics. The majority of Homeopaths in the UK are lay homeopaths that for the most part are strictly regulated by their own professional bodies, which maintain a high standard of ethics and training as is quoted below:

In order to be registered by one of the Homeopathic Associations in the UK, the Homeopath has to have:

  1. A qualification that is recognised by the Association
  2. Submit a set of cured cases that proves their knowledge of Homeopathy
  3. Interviewed and must have insurance
  4. Registered members have to submit to the laws of the association and obey the ethics of the Association and for continued registration must attend educational programs recognised by the relevant associations.

All the Homeopathic Associations of the UK are members of the Council of Organizations Registering Homeopaths and this organization was set up to develop a single register for Homeopaths in the UK.[8]

Only Homeopaths who have a medical degree (MD) and a recognized Homeopathic qualification are allowed to treat patients under the NHS. There are five NHS homeopathic hospitals: Bristol, Glasgow, Liverpool, London and Tunbridge Wells. Furthermore, there are a number of NHS homeopathic clinics around the country and over 400 General Practices (GP) use homeopathy in their everyday practice.[9]

Homeopathic Hospitals

No. Name Address No. of beds Year established Facilities Note
1

Royal London Hospital for Integrated Medicine; Formerly Royal London Homeopathy Hospital

60 Great Ormond Street
London WC1N 3HR.
Telephone: 0845 1555 000
Patient services: 020 7391 8888
Outpatient treatment only

1849 [10];

Merge with University College London Hospitals (UCLH) in 2002. [11][12]

Ambulatory care; inpatient, outpatient and consultation suites; diagnostic services; therapy and treatment areas; education, conference and research facilities; retail and pharmaceutical outlets; other services: allergy environmental and nutritional medicine,autogenic training, children's clinic,complementary cancer care programme,education services,musculoskeletal medicine clinic,pharmacy services,skin services,stress and mood disorder clinic,the marigold clinic - homeopathic podiatry and chiropody,Women clinic.

 -
2 Glasgow Homeopathic Hospital

Part of Gartnavel General Hospital site
1053 Great Western Road
Glasgow G12 0XQ

Hospital switchboard: +44 (0) 141 211 1600
Clinic Tel: +44 (0)141 211 1616
Clinic Fax: +44 (0)141 211 1627
E-mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
 14 [13]

1914 [14]

 - Grassroots lobbying have secured the position of the Glasgow Homeopathic Hospital, making it the only hospital that is active and well supported by the Scottish NHS and GP referral service.[15]
3 Bristol homeopathic hospital

Bristol Homeopathic Hospital
Cotham Hill,
Bristol,
Avon,
BS6 6JU

Tel: 0117 973 1231

 -

 1925 [14]

 -  
4 Liverpool homeopathic hospital Liverpool Department of Homeopathic Medicine
Old Swan Health Centre
St Oswald's Street
Old Swan
Liverpool
L13 2GA
Tel: 0151 285 3707. [16]
 -

1837 [14]; was originally called the Liverpool Hahnemann Hospital and Dispensary, being renamed the Liverpool Homeopathic Hospital in 1948. [17]

 - This hospital has a complementary cancer clinic which offers treatment with homeopathic remedies [16].

Homeopathy in the United States

Homeopathy and the National Medical Policies/Associations

This has been discussed earlier in this article under the development of Homeopathy. A few points will be reiterated and elaborated here.

While homeopathy came to the United States five years earlier than it did in England, and while many of the early American Homeopaths were allopathic trained doctors, homeopathy in the US is not officially recognized at present. Since each state in the US has its own laws, the practice of homeopathy in the eyes of the law also differs from state to state.

For example:

Several states in the US require an MD or a Doctor of Optometry (OD) degree to practice homeopathy since it is considered a form of medicine. In Arizona, Connecticut and Nevada, homeopaths are required to take the state license exam for homeopathy to show that they have the degree and the necessary accredited hours in homeopathy education. While in California, Rhode Island and Minnesota, they have new Health Freedom laws that allow unlicensed practitioners to practice homeopathy. Similar bills have been introduced by the Health Freedom Movement in other states.

Homeopathy in the US is regulated by its own professional bodies, which looks after registration and also the qualifications of homeopaths and has its own list of accredited practitioners. There are many organizations and bodies for homeopathy in North America, which acts in place of the government to ensure standards and ethics for homeopathy. The regulatory bodies and organizations for homeopaths in North America are listed here [18]:

  • American Association of Homeopathic Pharmacists
  • American Institute of Homeopathy (AIH)
  • American Integrative Medical Association –This is a non profit organization which focuses on education and research into Complementary and Alternative health treatments and therapies.
  • Baltimore Homeopathy Study Group –This is a group of laypersons who conduct meetings to discuss and learn about homeopathy.
  • California Homeopathic Medical Society - This is a Homeopathic medical society in California
  • Council on Homeopathic Education (CHE) –This council was formed in 1982. Among its objectives is to establish education for homeopathic practitioners.
  • Homeopathic Medical Society of the State of New York –This is a Homeopathic Association based in New York.
  • Homeopathy for Special Needs Children (HSNC). This organization offers resource for the parents of children with special needs who want to try homeopathic treatment to complement their management. The website of this organization offers inspiring stories of children who have recovered with the help of Homeopathic treatment.
  • Illinois Homeopathic Medical Association (IHMA)
  • The National Canter for Homeopathy is a National Homeopathy organization of the United States and its website has resources both for homeopaths and the general public.
  • National United Professional Association of Trained Homeopaths –This is a professional organization that provides a director of practitioner members and also provides information to the general public on Homeopathy.
  • North American Network of Homeopathic Educators (NANHE) – This organization promotes classical homeopathy throughout North America.
  • North American Society of Homeopaths – This is another organization of professional homeopathic practitioners.
  • West Coast Homeopathic Society – This Homeopathic society is an organization of homeopaths on the West Coast of North America.

While the practice of Homeopathy is not officially recognized nor regulated, homeopathic remedies are registered by law and are included in the American Pharmacopeia.

Borneman and Field [19] stated that in the United States, homeopathic drugs are subject to regulatory processes which resemble those that are applied to allopathic medications rather than those that are applied to dietary supplements. In order to be included in the Homeopathic Pharmacopiea, a homeopathic drug must be proven to be safe, effective and prepared according to that which has been specified in the general section of the Homeopathic Pharmacopeia of the US (HPUS).

Homeopathy Studies in United States

Homeopathic schools and colleges in the US will be listed under training and education

Homeopathy in Canada

Homeopathy and the National Medical Policies/Associations

In 1892 there were over 400 homeopathic associations at state and country level. There were also 195 homeopathic hospitals some of which had more than 1000 beds. Because of emigration from the US to Canada, immigrants who knew homeopathy started to practice homeopathy in Canada. One of the immigrants who practised homeopathy in Canada was Dr J O Rosenthein who practised homeopathy in 1845, Montreal, Quebec. Another immigrant was Dr Arthur Fisher who practised homeopathy in Montreal. They were the first homeopathic doctors to practise in Canada. Since then in Canada, some individuals have been working to regulate homeopathy in Canada. It took 13 years before the Ministry of Health and Long Term Care of Ontario submitted the proposal from the homeopathy lobby to the Health Professional Regulatory and Advisory Council. This was in 2005. The dialogue between the Homeopathy stakeholders is still going on. Currently, since 2009, a transitional council was established for homeopathy and the registrar of this council is Basil Ziv who is a homeopathic practitioner and educator. The full name of the transitional council is: Transitional Council of the College of Homeopaths of Ontario. [20]

Homeopathy Studies in Canada

Homeopathic schools and colleges in Canada will be listed under training and education.

 

Homeopathy in Australia

Homeopathy and the National Medical Policies/Associations

Homeopathy was introduced to Australia in 1842 and has undergone a period of flourishing followed by a decline and then a re-emergence in 1973 with the establishment of a teaching institution under the Australian Institute of Homeopathy called Nature Care College in Sydney.[21][22]

In 1999, various homeopathic medical associations relinquished their role as registering bodies to give way to one National Register for Homeopaths in Australia called The Australian Register of Homeopaths (AROH). In the same year, the Australian government endorsed the National Competency Standards for Homeopathy in conjunction with the National Training Authority.

In 2002, health-training package for homeopathy was formulated in conjunction with the homeopathic profession and the federal training advisory body. This package defines the standards of homeopathic training for registered homeopathy training bodies. Graduates of the accredited training bodies are eligible for registration with the Australian Register of Homeopaths and are allowed to practice Homeopathy.

In Australia, the largest practitioner association is the Australian Homeopathic Association (AHA). On their website is said that the AHA was established in 1995 via a merger of the associations of the following associations:

  1. New South Wales, South Australia
  2. Victoria/Tasmania branches of the Australian Federation of Homeopaths
  3. the Australian Society of Homeopaths (Queensland)
  4. The Oceanic Homeopathic Research Foundation (Western Australia) which was formerly the Australian Institute of Homoeopathy formed in 1946.

In 1997, 2 more associations merged with the AHA:

  1. The Australian Federation of Homeopathy in Queensland
  2. The Homeopathic Association of New South Wales.

Whilst the AHA is the major national homeopathic association representing professionals in Australia, and is a founding member of the International Council for Homeopathy (ICH), a number of smaller associations also exist, but professional members of all associations must be accredited with AROH, which is the single national accrediting body.

The objectives of the AHA [23]:

  • Advance the study and practice of Homoeopathy
  • Provide continuing education for Homoeopaths
  • Protect and promote the interests of Homoeopaths
  • Raise the public profile of Homoeopathy
  • Promote unity within the profession
  • Develop national and international links with other Homoeopaths and homoeopathic organizations.

Homeopathy Studies Australia

The accredited homeopathy schools will be listed under training and education. There is now one accredited course offering a Bachelor of Health Sciences (Homeopathy) degree, through Endeavour College of Natural Health which has campuses in Brisbane, Gold Coast, Melbourne, Sydney and Perth. [24]

Homeopathy in New Zealand

Homeopathy and the National Medical Policies/Associations

In New Zealand, homeopathic practice comes under common law, the same as in Great Britain. This means that homeopathy can be practised without medical licenses. New Zealand also has four manufacturing plants for homeopathic medicine. In New Zealand, several pharmacies and chemists sell homeopathic products. Homeopathy is self regulated in New Zealand and the regulatory body is the New Zealand Council of Homeopaths which represents the practicing homeopaths in New Zealand. Currently over 200 professional homeopaths are registered with this body which ensures that the homeopaths in its registry are competent.[25]

The New Zealand Council of Homeopaths states in its missions statement that in aims to promote homeopathy as a people’s choice by making sure that high standards of the practice of homeopathy maintained in New Zealand.

 

Among other things, the aims are to have integrity and professionalism through providing quality care, accountability in conduct, having respect for patients, colleagues and other health professionals as well as education the public and promoting research in all aspects of homeopathy.

A Diploma in Homeopathy is recognised by the New Zealand Qualifications agency. Several homeopathy colleges are listed by the New Zealand qualification agency as giving a quality assured education in homeopathy. (Listed and discussed in module 5). [26]

 

Homeopathy Studies in New Zealand

New Zealand supports four colleges that offer training in homeopathy: The Wellington College of Homeopathy, the Bay of Plenty College of Homeopathy, which has faculties in Tauranga, Auckland and Christchurch, and the Auckland College of Classical Homeopathy. Please note that education and training will be discussed in detail later. All these colleges have course that are recognised by the New Zealand Quality Assurance agency.

 

Homeopathy in India  

Homeopathy and the National Medical Policies/Associations

Historically, homeopathy in India was introduced as early as 1810 by a German homeopath named Dr. John Martin Honigberger who treated the Maharaja of Punjab, Ranjit Singh. This royal patronage helped the system to have its roots in India. Indians found in its (homeopathy) philosophy and principles, it is a reflection of their belief and culture.[27]

This may account for the fact that homeopathy spread and flourished in the Indian continent more than in any other country in the world. Homeopathy has been regulated in India since 1948.

A Homoeopathic Enquiry Committee was set up in 1948 to evolve a suitable arrangement to regulate teaching and practice of Homoeopathy. The government of India had appointed a Homeopathic Advisory Committee in 1952 and the recommendations of the committee led to passing of a Central Act in 1973 for recognition of this system of medicine. Homeopathy now has been accepted as one of the National Systems of Medicine in India. The legal status of homeopathy in India is at par with conventional medicine.

Homeopathy Studies in India

In India, Homeopathy is the third most popular method of treatment after allopathy and ayurveda.[28] It is estimated that there are about quarter million homeopaths in India. Nearly 10,000 new ones add to this number every year.

Diploma and graduate levels of homeopathic education was standardised in India in 1983. Before this, in 1978 a central council for research in Homeopathy was established. Other than this there are post graduate courses in Homeopathy in India.

There are approximately 186 homeopathic medical colleges in India. [28][29] Out of this, about 35 colleges belong to the government while the rest are managed privately owned.

No. Name Address No. of beds Year established Facilities
1 JSPS Government Homeopathic Medical College & Hospital Ramanthapur, Hyderabad – 500 013, AP, India 120 - -
2 Dakshin Kesri Muni Mishrilalji Homeopathic Medical College & Hospital [30] Behind Bibi Ka Makbara,
Shree Guru Ganesh Nagar,
Aurangabad - 431004.
Maharastra, India
130

1989 [31]

Out-patient and inpatient departments, operation theatre, x-ray, labour room, ultra sonography, gynec operation theatre, pathology lab physiotherapy, computerized case taking.
3 National Institute of Homeopathy [32] Block GE, Sec – III, Salt Lake, Kolkata – 700 106, WB, India 100

1975 [33]

Out-patient and inpatient departments, clinical pathology, radiology, ultrasonography, ECG and biochemistry
4 Nehru Homeopathic Medical College & Hospital B-Block, Defence Colony, New Delhi – 110 024, India 100 - -
5 The Government Homeopathic Medical College & Hospital, Hospital Thiruvananthapuram [34] Iranimuttam, P.O. Manacaud,
Thiruvananthapuram.
PIN - 695 009
Kerala, India
100

1997

Out-patient and inpatient departments, general medicine conditions, surgical and gynecological cases, base line investigations are done in the Hospital lab, X-ray, ECG, USS oxygen therapy, nebulisation, critical case.
6 Father Muller Homeopathic Medical College & Hospital [35] Kankandy, Mangalore – 575002, Karnataka, India 100

1985 [36]

Out-patient and inpatient departments, clinical laboratory, blood bank, radiology, ultra sound and imaging departments and C.T scan
7 The Calcutta Homeopathic Medical College & Hospital 265/66, Acharya Prafulla Chandra Road,
Kolkatta-700 009.
WB, India
50 - -
8 Mahesh Bhattacharya Homeopathic Medical College & Hospital H.I.T. Road, Ichapur,
Doomurjala
Howrah- 711 104.
WB, India
50 - -
9 D.N.De Homeopathic Medical College & Hospital 12 G.K. Road, Kolkata – 700 046, India 50 - -
10 Abhin Chandra Homoeopathic Medical College & Hospital Unit-III, Kharvela Nagar,
Bhubaneswar,
Distt. Puri.
PIN - 751 001
Orissa, India
50 - -

 

Homeopathy in Pakistan

Homeopathy and the National Medical Policies/Associations

Homeopathy in Pakistan (and India) was introduced by Dr. John Martin Honigberger, under the rulings of Maharaja of Punjab, Ranjit Singh.

In 1965, the Government of Pakistan officially recognized homoeopathy and the Board of Homeopathic System of Medicine was set up under the Unani Ayurvedic and Homeopathic Practitioners' Act 1965 (II of 1965). [37]

Pakistan has a National Council of Homeopathy which is under the Ministry of Health. This council oversees homeopathic education which includes medical science to ensure that graduates can provide good service to the general public both locally and internationally. This council was formerly called the Board of Homeopathic System of Medicine. The name change took effect in 1982. The Council also approves new homeopathic colleges and keeps a register of qualified homeopathic practitioners.


Homeopathy Studies in Pakistan

 

There are two types of courses being offered in Pakistan. One is the Diploma of Homeopathic Medical System which is supervised by the National Council of Homeopathy Pakistan and the other is the Bachelor of Homeopathic Medicine and Surgery under the University of Pakistan. The National Council of Homeopathy of Pakistan registers and licenses both categories of graduates. The registration and licensing of practitioners falls under an Act of the Pakistan Parliament and is in accordance with a government approved syllabus. The DHMS in Pakistan is a four year course rather than the usual 3 years that is common for Diploma programs.[38]

The National Council of Homeopathy Pakistan has also recommended that the Government approve of the 5 year degree course and a post graduate course of one year.

 

Homeopathy in Japan

Homeopathy and the National Medical Policies/Associations

Homeopathy in Japan is self-regulated by two Homeopathic Medical Associations. The Japanese Homeopathic Medical Association (JPHMA) is the biggest homeopathic organization in Japan. This organization admits members who have passed its own qualifying exam.

The PPHMA has been conducting certifying examinations since 1999. It is linked with the Homeopathic Medical Association of UK. In 2006, the JPHMA started to conduct their own independent examinations. Another UK based homeopathy organisation, the Alliance of registered homeopaths also accepts members registered with the JPHMA. Veterinary homeopaths are also being certified by the JPHMA. [39]

Another Homeopathic association which is present in Japan is the Japanese Physicians Society for Homeopathy (JPSH) and this is a society of Medical Homeopaths. It is formed of conventionally qualified doctors who are also qualified in Homeopathy. The JPSH was started by Dr Ryoichi Obitsu and consists of medical doctors, dentists and veterinary doctors. The first indemnity insurance for professional homeopaths and patients was brought about in 2005. [40]

There is no mention of Japanese government regulation of Homeopathy although other complementary and alternative therapies in Japan are being registered since 1990. From the way homeopathy has grown and flourished in Japan, it seems that homeopathy is not being actively opposed in Japan. As for the legal status of Traditional Medicine in Japan and Homeopathy may also fall under this act:

The Japanese have the Medical Practitioners law 201 of 1948 which says that only allopathic physicians can practice medicine. Even so, there is no restriction on the types of medical procedures which allopathic physicians can use in their practice and this would mean that it is legal for doctor to practice homeopathy. As for Pharmacists, according to the Pharmacist law number 146 of 1960, a person must be qualified as a pharmacist to engage in any services related to any form of traditional medicines which would also include homeopathy. [1]

From the above, allopathic doctors are allowed to practice even homeopathy, nonetheless, it is up to the homeopathic associations to make sure they are qualified to do so.

Homeopathy Studies in Japan

This will be discussed under Education module

 

Homeopathy in Malaysia

Homeopathy and the National Medical Policies/Associations

Homeopathy was first introduced to Malaysia by Dr Burhanuddin Al-Helmy (1911 – 1969) in 1929. However, the development of homeopathy showed tremendous progress in the 80’s and 90’s with a few more homeopathic association and institution and increasing number of homeopathic practitioners and clinics.

The regulatory situation at present is that there is no compulsory regulation and no compulsory registration for any homeopathic practitioner as it is listed under complementary medicine. However, homeopathic medicines have to be registered with the drug control authority as stated below:

The Malaysian government adopts and implements the allopathic system as the official system. However in subsection 1 of section 34 of the Medical Act of 1971 there is the following general exemption:

Any person has the right to practice any system of therapeutics or surgery according to Malay Chinese Indian or other native methods as long as they do not pose as allopathic doctors and do not use the titles of allopathic doctors. They may also charge a fee for their services.

At the moment, there are no other laws that affect the practice of traditional and complementary medicine but the production and sale of traditional medicine is now regulated under the Poison Act of 1952 and the Sale of Drug act of 1952. Under these acts, all traditional and complementary medicine products have to be registered in order to be sold. Manufacturers of traditional and complementary products have to comply with good manufacturing practices and all homeopathic medicines have to be registered with the National Pharmaceutical and Drug Control Board. [1]

In 1998 the Traditional and Complementary Medicine Standing committee was formed. This resulted in the formation of Traditional and Complementary Medicine Practitioner Bodies including one for homeopathy, that is, the Malaysian Homeopathic Medical Council (2001).

In 2001 the National Policy on Traditional and Complementary Medicine (2001) was launched. In 2004 the Traditional and Complimentary Medicine Division (T&CM) in the Ministry of Health (MOH) (2004) was formed.

The Malaysian Ministry of Health is currently in the process of introducing legislation to all Traditional and Complementary Medicine (TCM) practices including Homeopathy. T&CM Division is now facilitating and cooperating with practitioner bodies to register and regulate practitioners. The governing body for homeopathy is the Malaysian Homeopathic Medical Council (Majlis Perubatan Homeopati Malaysia).[41] The T&CM division is currently encouraging voluntary online registration of homeopaths who are also encouraged to register with the Malaysian Homeopathic Medical Council. Presently there is no legislation, which makes registration mandatory. The Traditional and Complementary Medicine Bill is expected to be legalized in 2008 [42] but, to date is still in the pipelines.  The ninth Malaysia plan up till 2010 has also laid down that Traditional and Complementary Medicine will be offered as a treatment modality in 3 pilot hospitals. This has already been implemented. The tenth Malaysia plan which starts in 2011 is expected to further extend the integrated health care service to more hospitals and include Homeopathy as a modality.[43]

The Malaysian Homeopathic Medical Council (Majlis Perubatan Homeopati Malaysia) has a few bodies or associations under its wings. They are [44]:

  • Malaysian Homeopathic Medical Associations (PPHM - Persatuan Perubatan Homeopati Malaysia)
  • Malaysian Bumiputra Homeopathic Medical Associations (PPHBM - Persatuan Perubatan Homeopati Bumiputra Malaysia)
  • Sarawak Homeopathy Medical Association (PPHS - Persatuan Perubatan Homeopati Sarawak)
  • Malaysian Homeopathic and Biochemic Association (PHDBM – Persatuan Homeopati dan Biokimia Malaysia)
  • Persatuan Doktor Homeopathy Sabah
  •  Persatuan Homeopathy dan Homotoksikologi Pulau Pinang.

Homeopathy Studies in Malaysia

The Malaysian government has by legislation also allowed Traditional and Complementary Medicine subjects to be offered at University level and this has resulted in an application to offer homeopathy as a degree, Bachelor of Science in Homeopathic Medicine.

The current status is that the Malaysian Qualification Agency has approved the application submitted by Cyberjaya University College of Medical Science, for a degree course of Bachelor of Homeopathic Medical Science in July 2009. The course started in July 2010.

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