Umesh Modi is a chartered accountant, and Pamini Jatheeskumar is a chartered certified accountant at Silver Levene...
  Don Lavoie is alcohol programme manager at Public Health England and Gul Root is lead...
Don Lavoie is alcohol programme manager at Public Health England and Gul Root is lead pharmacist, Health and Wellbeing Directorate, Public Health England
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a small white pillules imageJune 8 2018

The British Homeopathic Association (BHA) has failed in its legal challenge to overturn NHS England’s decision to stop funding homoeopathic medicines.

The High Court ruled against the BHA’s application which it had made following NHS England announcing plans to curb prescriptions for medicines that can be bought over the counter or are of low value “as part of action to clamp down on waste.” 

In seeking a judicial review, the BHA believed it had identified “serious flaws in the way the health commissioning authority consulted the public on this issue.” The charity’s main claims against NHS England were that:

  • the consultation had misrepresented homoeopathy and was therefore unfair;
  • one of the consultation reports used to inform the public was “so complicated it would deter rather than encourage people to respond”.

Although the judge found there were sufficient grounds for a judicial review, he dismissed the case after a four-day hearing.

BHA Chair Margaret Wyllie accused the NHS of manipulating the consultation process. “That NHS England attracted fewer than 3,000 responses from patients to a national consultation that ran for three months highlights its failure to genuinely engage with the public on important decisions about healthcare provision,” she said.

Commenting on the outcome, NHS chief Simon Stevens said: “There is no robust evidence to support homoeopathy which is at best a placebo and a misuse of scarce NHS funds. So we strongly welcome the High Court’s clear cut decision to kick out this costly and spurious legal challenge.”

Links:
NHS England announcement     
BHA statement
NHS England ‘Items which should not be routinely prescribed in primary care’    

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