Campaign calls for global pressure on Australian government to release ‘buried’ report

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    [post_content] => Homeopaths in Australia have launched a global campaign calling on the government there to publish the first version of a review of homeopathy which they claim was deliberately 'buried'.

The report, written in 2012, was commissioned by the Australian National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC), a government body, but never published. Instead, a second, critical report came out in 2015 which concluded that homeopathy was ineffective, leading to media coverage around the world.

The existence of the first report only came to light through a Freedom of Information request (FoI), although its contents have not been published. Campaigners say that the decision to suppress it and use a different methodology for the second review raises serious questions.

Justifying its decision not to publish the first report, NHMRC said its quality was poor, despite the research being carried out by the scientist who had written the council's own guidelines on conducting evidence reviews.

The new campaign, Releasethefirstreport.com, is calling for the publication of the original, publicly-funded review in the name of transparency and to give the public access to all available evidence about homeopathy 'so that they can make informed choices about their healthcare'.

Campaigners have also pointed to the recent UK High Court ruling to uphold an effective ban on homeopathic prescriptions on the NHS as setting a 'dangerous precedent' for homeopathy worldwide.

An earlier Your Health, Your Choice campaign which highlighted the 'flaws' in the published report and drew public attention to the need to protect access to complementary and alternative medicines in Australia, led to 87,000 people signing a petition.

Releasethefirstreport.com is appealing for support from around the world and is asking people to sign up at its website.

The Society of Homeopaths is supporting the campaign and encouraging members to sign up.

"This a familiar pattern from certain governments in dealing with homeopathic evidence - accentuate the unreliable and negative while suppressing the positive," said Mark Taylor, the Society's Chief Executive.
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Homeopaths in Australia have launched a global campaign calling on the government there to publish the first version of a review of homeopathy which they claim was deliberately ‘buried’.

The report, written in 2012, was commissioned by the Australian National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC), a government body, but never published. Instead, a second, critical report came out in 2015 which concluded that homeopathy was ineffective, leading to media coverage around the world.

The existence of the first report only came to light through a Freedom of Information request (FoI), although its contents have not been published. Campaigners say that the decision to suppress it and use a different methodology for the second review raises serious questions.

Justifying its decision not to publish the first report, NHMRC said its quality was poor, despite the research being carried out by the scientist who had written¬†the council’s own guidelines on conducting evidence reviews.

The new campaign, Releasethefirstreport.com, is calling for the publication of the original, publicly-funded review in the name of transparency and to give the public access to all available evidence about homeopathy ‘so that they can make informed choices about their healthcare’.

Campaigners have also pointed to the recent UK High Court ruling to uphold an effective ban on homeopathic prescriptions on the NHS as setting a ‘dangerous precedent’ for homeopathy worldwide.

An earlier Your Health, Your Choice campaign which highlighted the ‘flaws’ in the published report and drew public attention to the need to protect access to complementary and alternative medicines in Australia, led to 87,000 people signing a petition.

Releasethefirstreport.com is appealing for support from around the world and is asking people to sign up at its website.

The Society of Homeopaths is supporting the campaign and encouraging members to sign up.

“This a familiar pattern from certain governments in dealing with homeopathic evidence – accentuate the unreliable and negative while suppressing the positive,” said Mark Taylor, the Society’s Chief Executive.

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