The Food and Drug Administration has finally decided to hold public hearings regarding the regulation of homeopathic drugs, and it’s good to know that the Center For Inquiry, which has long campaigned against the selling of the expensive placebo masquerading as real medicine, will be providing testimony:
In 2011, the Center for Inquiry filed three petitions with the FDA, with one of those petitions asking the agency to address problems in the marketing of homeopathic products, and to develop a regulatory framework that would insist on the same standards for safety and effectiveness as any other drug or medical treatment. (The other petitions dealt with issues relating to a specific manufacturer.) In 2012, the FDA responded to the petition, stating that it raised “complex issues requiring extensive review and analysis.” Given the FDA’s announcement of a public hearing, it appears the agency has now conducted sufficient analysis to determine CFI’s petition raises important issues that need to be addressed.
In its testimony, CFI will highlight homeopathy’s potential for harm, particularly to children who have no choice in the medical treatments they receive. “Perhaps the greatest harm caused by homeopathy is not necessarily caused by the products themselves, but by the fact that people often rely on homeopathic products to the exclusion of proven scientific remedies,” we state. “Homeopathy is unsupported by scientific evidence, ineffective in treating illness and, when relied upon instead of actual medicine, dangerous and even deadly.”
The hearings take place early next week.
This is a big deal and something that likely wouldn’t have happened with individual activists. The government is paying attention precisely because this is a large organization putting its weight on this testimony. So kudos to CFI for being invited as a voice of reason on an issue where irrationality reigns supreme.
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