February 20, 2007
Question written on 20/02/2007
To ask the Secretary of State for Health if she will make a statement on the future of funding of homeopathic treatment on the NHS.
Answered by Caroline Flint
The Government consider that decision-making on individual clinical interventions, whether conventional, or complementary/alternative treatments, have to be a matter for local national health service providers and practitioners as they are best placed to know their community’s needs. In making such decisions, they have to take into account evidence for the safety and clinical and cost-effectiveness of any treatments, the availability of suitably qualified practitioners, and the needs of the individual patient. Clinical responsibility rests with the NHS professional who makes the decision to refer and who must therefore be able to justify any treatment they recommend. If they are unconvinced about the suitability of a particular treatment, they cannot be made to refer.