Bristol, North Somerset and South Gloucestershire Clinical Commissioning Groups (CCGs) are consulting
on their proposal to decommission all NHS-funded homeopathy.
After the Bristol Homeopathic Hospital closed
in January 2013, homeopathy continued to be provided by a small clinic at the South Bristol Community Hospital. Just three years later, in October 2015, this too closed to be replaced by a private clinic, the Portland Centre for Integrative Medicine
. That is not part of the NHS but is contracted by the CCGs to provide homeopathy services.Now the group of CCGs wants to end all homeopathy referrals to that clinic.
The consultation consists essentially of just two simple questions:
- Do you understand the reasons for our proposal to stop NHS funding for homeopathy treatment? Yes|No
- Do you agree or disagree with our proposal to cease NHS funding for homeopathy? Agree|Disagree
…with the opportunity to explain your answers and provide further information.The consultation closes next Tuesday, 15 August 2017
so plenty of time to submit your response, but don't leave it too late!
Homeopaths and their trade bodies (including the Faculty of Homeopathy
and the British Homeopathic Association
) have been urging their members to respond: we know decisions should not be made on the popularity of a treatment but on the best evidence, but the more the CCGs hear about the evidence-based position, the easier it will be for them to make the right decision.
We will be submitting our own comprehensive response to the CCGs and we will publish it later in the year. It is based on our previous responses to other CCGs and in their report to the Wirral CCG, NHS Midlands and Lancashire Commissioning Support Unit said of our submission
However, we would direct the Clinical Commissioning Group to pay close attention to a number of key evidence summaries, including that of the House of Commons’ Science and Technology Select Committee; the Australian Government’s National Health and Medical Research Council’s comprehensive review from earlier this year; and the submission to this Clinical Commissioning Group made by the Nightingale Collaboration – whose analysis of studies for and against homeopathy, as well as responses to common criticisms of each study, we find to be wholly informative.
We see that as quite an endorsement of the work we put into our response!
There is another consultation running at the moment, this time by NHS England
that would effectively blacklist homeopathy, but that doesn't close until October so we'll leave that for another time.
It'll only take you a minute to respond to this consultation
: why not do it right now?