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Spain wages war on dubious homeopathy meds

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Spain wages war on dubious homeopathy meds
Photos: AFP
13:34 CET+01:00
Spain’s Health Ministry has blacklisted thousands of alternative medicine products in a bid to crack down on phony ailments and health treatments it considers to have “no scientific basis”.

If you’re a big believer in homeopathic treatments, Spain is no longer the place with the biggest range of remedies that can be bought over the counter. 

The country’s Ministry of Health has released a list of only 2,008 homeopathic products whose manufacturers will have to apply for an official government license for if they wish to continue selling them.

The homeopathic producers on the list have until April 2019 to prove that their remedies actually work, which may very well slash homeopathic products in Spain to the bare minimum.

The rest of the more than 12,000 homeopathic ‘meds’ circulating around Spain for the past few years will no longer have the right to be sold in Spain nor the right to apply for the license.

It’s the latest blow for Spain’s homeopathy industry, once worth an estimated €100 million but which has seen a drop in public trust and therefore sales of around 30 percent in the last five years.

Considered by most scientists and medical professionals as a pseudoscience, homeopathy is an alternative medicine dating back to 1796 which claims that what causes the symptoms of a disease in healthy people can cure similar symptoms in ill people.

SEE ALSO: Grieving dad sues over 'cure cancer with vitamins' therapy

Big German and French pharma companies have kept a fairly tight grip on the industries in their home countries, whereas the more scrupulous governments of Spain and Great Britain in 2017 voted to have their health ministries exert more control over an industry they considered dubious.

Spain’s Health Ministry stopped allowing homoepathy treatments from being prescribed as part of people’s social security benefits, along with acupuncture, herbal medicine and body-based practices such as osteopathy, shiatsu or aromatherapy.

This latest 2018 ruling means that the number of homeopathic products available in Spanish chemists and health shops is set to shrink even further.

"Homeopathy is an alternative therapy that has not shown any scientific evidence that it works" Spanish Minister of Health Maria Luisa Carcedo is quoted as saying in La Vanguardia in response to the homeopathic blacklist.

“I’m committed to combatting all forms of pseudoscience:”
 

READ ALSO: Top Spanish uni scraps homeopathy - because it's nonsense

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