Doctors attack NHS homeopathy

There’s a good letter in Today’s Times from doctors who urge NHS trusts to stop paying for alternative medicine. As Tim Worstall puts it:

If as and when double blind trials are done to show that “alternative” treatments work, they then stop being alternative and become conventional, evidence based medicine. Which is as it should be. If rich idiots (or even poor idiots) which to waste their money on healing crystals, let them do so. The rest of us can then have our tax money spent on crystals that actually work: like the lutetium oxide ones that are at the heart of an MRI scanner.

Sorry, I hit publish before adding this bit: I don’t have a problem with people going for homeopathy, but when the NHS can’t cope with conventional medicine – stuff with a proven effect – then the last thing trusts should be doing is paying for quackery. If you’ve been following this blog for a while you’ll know of my own experiences with rationing: despite my GP agreeing that I needed an MRI scan and then back surgery, my local NHS trust wouldn’t fund the scan because my back injury wasn’t life threatening. I was lucky: thanks to generous relatives and a book deal I was able to scrape together the money to go private, and I’m largely okay now.  Had I stuck with the NHS, I’d still be crippled.