It’s important that all members of the IM community make their voices heard on the proposed guidelines. As they stand the guidelines could impact doctors, complementary practitioners, allied health professionals, pharmacists, compounding pharmacists and functional testing labs who work alongside integrative medicine.
Submissions can be made by email marked ‘Consultation on complementary and unconventional medicine and emerging treatments’ should be sent to [email protected] by close of business 12 May 2019. You can read the proposed guidelines here.
Each of you have your own unique take on the impact of these guidelines, it’s important that this diversity of views is expressed to the MBA. However, some identified areas of concern in the document which you may wish to address include:
- That the rationale groups integrative medicine with ‘unconventional medicine’ and ’emerging treatments’, by association this implies that IM is ‘fringe’, rather than based in evidence and a valid and vital adjunct within our medical practice
- That many of the terms used in the rationale, including ‘unconventional medicine’, ‘inappropriate use’ and ’emerging treatments’ are not adequately defined which creates ambiguity and uncertainty
- That the term ‘complementary medicine’ also includes access to traditional medicines which is defined as a basic human right in Australia and by the WHO
- That there is no evidence produced in the discussion paper that quantifies risk or relative risk in practicing complementary or integrative medicine vs ‘conventional’ medicine
- That there was NO consultation with the IM or complementary medicine community before the document came out, giving us limited opportunity to inform the process
- 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 2 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’ vs. ‘unconventional’ can be mis-used by people with professional differences of opinion and result in vexatious complaints