Posts Tagged ‘alternative medicine’

A big fat placebo

Saturday, June 6th, 2015 | Thoughts

A friend of mine, who works as doctor, told me that doctors were banned from prescribing placebos (and not telling them they are placebos) because of the ethical issues surrounding it.

However, I recently decided to verify the fact and it turns out it isn’t true. In fact an article on BBC News shows that 97% of doctor’s had admitted to prescribing a placebo at least once in their career.

This raises interesting questions for alternative medicine. Is there room for treatments that provide the proven clinical benefit of placebo even if that is all it is?

Homeopathy is Hokum

Thursday, June 27th, 2013 | Public Speaking, Video

For my 8th project at Toastmasters, I presented a talk on homeopathy.

There is a reason it isn’t called medicine

Sunday, January 30th, 2011 | Humanism

On Tuesday, James delivered the first Leeds Atheist Society talk of 2011, on alternative medicine.

10:23 homeopathic protest

Sunday, January 31st, 2010 | Events, Humanism, Science

Yesterday saw a nationwide protest against the sale of homeopathic remedies at Boots. At cities across the UK, and indeed some in Australia and Canada too, people gathered to take a homeopathic overdose to show that there was in fact nothing in the pills at all.

At Leeds we managed to get 32 people down to the event most of which, including myself, downed an entire bottle of homeopathic arsenic and yet somehow survived. We also got a reporter from ITV’s Calendar news come down and featured us on their evening segment – I’ve yet to see it but I’ve heard a mixed reaction so far.

The response from Boots was a predictable one – homeopathy is recognised by the NHS (something which is in the process of changing as the government inquiry is quickly dismantling the case for it) and that many people use homeopathic remedies – of course many people read horoscopes that doesn’t mean there is any truth in them. But of course we knew they would just ignore the science and just try and insist that lots of people bought it so it must be true.

Most of the major papers have run stories about it today so we’re chalking this one down as a big success for the skeptics movement. A big thank you to everyone from Leeds Skeptics who came down to take part, Daryl for organising the Leeds event and the guys at Merseyside Skeptics for putting it all together.

It’s only water

Sunday, August 24th, 2008 | Religion & Politics

A quick google around tells me that you can pick up a homeopathic remedy for anxiety for as little as £13.17 plus shipping.

But here is the thing. It’s just water.

Suddenly seems rather expensive for 15ml when Tesco are doing 2,000ml for a rather more reasonable £0.17.

It really makes you wonder however why the NHS are spending millions of pounds of our money on homeopathic remedies. And as such I’m starting a new campaign to promote greater understanding of homeopathic medicine because, much like religion, the thing that will do the most damage is if people actually learn what it’s about.

You can learn more about the bullshit the NHS is spending money on at the campaign’s website, It’s Only Water.