As many of you may be aware the Medical Board of Australia (MBA) has commenced a public consultation on new guidelines for ‘complementary and unconventional medicine and emerging treatments’. There is a concern that if adopted, a two-tiered system may arise that threatens Integrative Medicine (IM) and unreasonably targets practitioners. The Medical Board of Australia have made assurances that their measures are to root out unsafe practices and are not intended to target Integrative Medicine. In any case, the IM community are coming together to challenge the adoption of these guidelines as there will be worrisome implications if passed.
Whilst organisations and doctors will be responding to the MBA with their direct concerns. We are encouraging our community, friends and supporters of Integrative Health Solutions to get involved by informing themselves of these new guidelines and expressing their concerns to friends and local government. Together we need to do all we can to stop the adoption of these guidelines.It’s important that all members of the Integrative Medicine community make their voices heard on these proposals. As they stand the guidelines could impact doctors, complementary practitioners, allied health professionals, pharmacists, compounding pharmacists and functional testing labs.
What You Can Do:
There are different implications to these guidelines so we encourage you to be informed.
Email your concerns regarding the ‘Consultation on complementary and unconventional medicine and emerging treatments’ to firstname.lastname@example.org by close of business 30 June 2019.
Some concerns to address and bring up to include:
- The grouping of integrative medicine with ‘unconventional medicine’ and ’emerging treatments’ may create the impression of being “fringe” rather than evidence-based
- That many of the terms used in the rationale such as ‘unconventional medicine’, ‘inappropriate use’ and ’emerging treatments’ leads to ambiguity and uncertainty
- That the term ‘complementary medicine’ also includes access to traditional medicines
- No evidence produced in the discussion paper quantifies risk in practicing complementary or integrative medicine vs ‘conventional’ medicine
- That there was NO consultation with the Integrative Medicine or complementary medicine community before the document’s release
- That the current Good Medical Practice: A Code of Conduct for Doctors in Australia already adequately regulates doctors’ practise and protects patient safety. There is no need or justification for a two-tiered approach
- That the right of patients to determine their own medical care is under threat
- That the lack of clarity on how to determine what is ‘conventional’ versus ‘unconventional’ can be misused by people with professional differences of opinion which results in troublesome complaints
Letting our elected officials know that this is an issue we deeply care about is crucial. Contact your local member – federal and state. Write to your state and federal health minister and Federal Minister, Greg Hunt.
Review the proposed recommendations, learn more and lodge your online submission at: Freedom of Choice for Health Care in Australia.