Eurocam: Our work should be driven by protecting patient choice

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    [ID] => 16229
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    [post_date] => 2019-02-01 08:39:48
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    [post_content] => At 5.30 on a dark December morning in London, I made my way to St Pancras to catch the Eurostar to Brussels. I was travelling to represent the European Central Council of Homeopaths round a table in Brussels with Michael Smith, ECCH’s chair, at the last Eurocam meeting of 2018.

Eurocam represents complementary and alternative practitioners and, particularly important, it includes patient groups.

What’s so positive about it is that we are all there to work together towards CAM being woven into healthcare in Europe. Whatever is being discussed, from the budget through to strategy planning, it is good to listen to views round the table from the osteopath, the vet who practises homeopathy, the art therapist, the acupuncturist, the intern representing the anthrosophical doctors or the medical homeopath. We all work constructively to see CAM represented where it matters in policy formation in the European Union.

It is particularly good to hear the patient perspective; one of the patient associations is working on patients’ criteria on the quality of healthcare providers.

As practitioners we so often see the world from our own standpoint. As a patient representative reminded us, Eurocam's work should be driven by seeing patients go on having the right to choose the healthcare of their choice.

A European Parliament Recital agreed in 2017 does reinforce this, saying ". . . Patients should have access to the healthcare and treatment options of their choice and preference, including to complementary and alternative therapies and medicines.”

Seeing this through, particularly for homeopathy, can seem an uphill task. Thanks to the dedication of Ton Nicolai, a former President of the European Committee for Homeopathy and now Eurocam's spokesperson, CAM is represented in at least two meetings, conferences and workshops a month at EU level. In 2018 there was a focus on the role of CAM in antimicrobial resistance and the EU is particularly interested in this.

Eurocam operates on a tiny budget with much of the work being done on a semi-voluntary basis as all member associations operate on tight budgets. Semi-voluntary does not mean ‘amateur” though; Ton Nicolai has long experience in representing homeopathy and now CAM in Europe.

Arriving home in the quiet of the Somerset countryside just before midnight, I reflect that whatever the outcome of Brexit, the fact that the Society of Homeopaths is part of this wider European community is something to celebrate.

Zofia Dymitr FSHom

Material published in this section of the website does not necessarily reflect the opinion of the Society of Homeopaths.
    [post_title] => Eurocam: Our work should be driven by protecting patient choice
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At 5.30 on a dark December morning in London, I made my way to St Pancras to catch the Eurostar to Brussels. I was travelling to represent the European Central Council of Homeopaths round a table in Brussels with Michael Smith, ECCH’s chair, at the last Eurocam meeting of 2018.

Eurocam represents complementary and alternative practitioners and, particularly important, it includes patient groups.

What’s so positive about it is that we are all there to work together towards CAM being woven into healthcare in Europe. Whatever is being discussed, from the budget through to strategy planning, it is good to listen to views round the table from the osteopath, the vet who practises homeopathy, the art therapist, the acupuncturist, the intern representing the anthrosophical doctors or the medical homeopath. We all work constructively to see CAM represented where it matters in policy formation in the European Union.

It is particularly good to hear the patient perspective; one of the patient associations is working on patients’ criteria on the quality of healthcare providers.

As practitioners we so often see the world from our own standpoint. As a patient representative reminded us, Eurocam’s work should be driven by seeing patients go on having the right to choose the healthcare of their choice.

A European Parliament Recital agreed in 2017 does reinforce this, saying “. . . Patients should have access to the healthcare and treatment options of their choice and preference, including to complementary and alternative therapies and medicines.”

Seeing this through, particularly for homeopathy, can seem an uphill task. Thanks to the dedication of Ton Nicolai, a former President of the European Committee for Homeopathy and now Eurocam’s spokesperson, CAM is represented in at least two meetings, conferences and workshops a month at EU level. In 2018 there was a focus on the role of CAM in antimicrobial resistance and the EU is particularly interested in this.

Eurocam operates on a tiny budget with much of the work being done on a semi-voluntary basis as all member associations operate on tight budgets. Semi-voluntary does not mean ‘amateur” though; Ton Nicolai has long experience in representing homeopathy and now CAM in Europe.

Arriving home in the quiet of the Somerset countryside just before midnight, I reflect that whatever the outcome of Brexit, the fact that the Society of Homeopaths is part of this wider European community is something to celebrate.

Zofia Dymitr FSHom

Material published in this section of the website does not necessarily reflect the opinion of the Society of Homeopaths.

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