Latest News & Upcoming Events

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'Just One Drop' documentary   The AHA is issuing the following media release on the occasion of the premiere of the documentary film 'JUST ONE DROP' in London. It marks the beginning of the... Read more
AHA Media Release & NHMRC Response   Open Letter from the AHA to the NHMRC   Response Letter from the NHMRC to the AHA   Following the NHMRC's publication, on 11 March 2015, of its 'Information... Read more
NHMRC Information Paper   NHMRC Information Paper, published 11 March 2015: 'Evidence on the effectiveness of homeopathy for treating health conditions'   NHMRC Statement, published 11... Read more
AHA/AROH Combined Submission Following an invitation by the Chief Medical Officer to provide details on research supporting homœopathy's efficacy, safety and cost-effectiveness as part of the... Read more
Homoeopathy: medicine or bluff? Homoeopathy: medicine or bluff? A documentary about homœopathic research in Germany and Switzerland with English subtitles. View Video Here. Read more
Apply for AHA Student Membership Free AHA Student membership is available to students of any health modality resident in Australia and New Zealand. Please ensure you submit evidence of current... Read more
Join the AHA Event Mailing List To find out about future conferences, seminars, webinars, meetings and workshops organised by the Association in each state and nationwide, non-members can join the... Read more
Advertising in AHA Publications Please contact Carolyn Graham, to arrange advertising. You can download and view rates sheet here. For Noticeboard advertising download the Noticeboard advertising... Read more

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'Just One Drop' documentary

Just One Drop 

The AHA is issuing the following media release on the occasion of the premiere of the documentary film 'JUST ONE DROP' in London.

It marks the beginning of the AHA's media campaign, the next step in the endeavour to have the NHMRC 'Homeoathy Review' rescinded, with the on-going complaint still before the Commonwealth Ombudsman. 

WORLD FILM PREMIERE EXPOSES AUSTRALIAN RESEARCH SCANDAL

New investigation and complaint against top Government agency

A NEW documentary has brought Australia’s scientific research community under international scrutiny with a premiere in London overnight. (April 6, 2017)

The film, Just One Drop, reveals Australia’s National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC) is accused of bias and misleading the public over a damning report into the effectiveness of homoeopathy in 2015.

The film shows never before seen evidence and examines the findings of a rigorous two year Australia/UK investigation which reveals the NHMRC used “unprecedented” scientific methods and had multiple conflicts of interest.

A formal complaint against the NHMRC is now before the Australian Ombudsman detailing procedural and research flaws, conflicts of interest, and reporting inaccuracies.

In an Executive Summary of the complaint it concludes the NHMRC’s findings are “inaccurate, highly misleading to the public and unjustly damaging to the credibility of the homeopathy sector”.

One of Australia’s top health lawyers, Dr Teresa Nicoletti of law firm Mills Oakley provided independent written advice raising concerns about the NHMRC’s apparent bias, conflicts and flawed procedure surrounding the review.

Gerry Dendrinos of the Australian Homeopathic Association (AHA) was involved in the investigation along with the UK’s Homeopathy Research Institute and features in the film.

Mr Dendrinos said Freedom of Information documents show NHMRC’s own expert advisers disagreed with the “overly definitive findings” of the Review.

The highly respected Australasian Cochrane Centre advised that the NHMRC’s finding of “‘no reliable evidence’ does not seem an accurate reflection of the body of evidence”.

The Ombudsman Complaint reveals:

NHMRC did the review twice– the first review was never made public

  • The first reviewer was sacked and the review’s existence, its cost and findings never made public.
  • The first report was rejected despite being undertaken by a highly respected scientist and author of the NHMRC’s own guidelines on reviewing health evidence.

NHMRC misled the public

  • NHMRC said the findings of the 2015 report were based on a “rigorous assessment of over 1800 studies”. In fact the findings were based on only 176 papers.
  • NHMRC said it used “standardised accepted methods” but it didn’t.
  • To be “reliable” NHMRC made the arbitrary decision that a trial had to have at least 150 participants and meet an unusually high threshold for quality.

Mr Dendrinos says: “Our investigation shows NHMRC  ‘invented’, unprecedented and arbitrary rules that dismissed 171 of the 176 studies leaving 5 that were considered ‘reliable’.  Of the five, one was positive for homoeopathy but the NHMRC still refused to accept its findings.”

University of Washington Professor, Doctor Jennifer Jacobs, also interviewed in Just One Drop:

“I’ve never read anywhere that there must be at least 150 subjects in a study for it to be considered valid so it is just an artificial delineation they seem to have made”.

The NHMRC regularly funds and collaborates on trials with fewer than 150 subjects.

Conflicts of Interest

  • The Complaint to the Ombudsman details how NHMRC failed to disclose or manage multiple anti-homoeopathy conflicts of interest.

Example: The original Chair of the NHMRC committee, Professor Peter Brooks, was a member of the anti-homoeopathy lobby group, Friends of Science in Medicine.

The NHMRC also excluded homoeopathy experts from the working committee in breach of its own mandatory research standards.

Gerry Dendrinos: “The NHMRC’s job was to accurately summarise all of the evidence for homoeopathy. What we ended up with was a review that was biased, ignored positive evidence, violated mandatory administrative and research standards.

“Not only is it bad science, it also raises major concerns regarding the validity of NHMRC reviews. That’s why this had to be taken to the Ombudsman.”

“Positive, high quality studies do exist, and show that homoeopathy works for a number of medical conditions such as hay fever, sinusitis and cough. These studies were excluded from the findings, as was all real-world clinical studies, which consistently demonstrate the effectiveness, cost-effectiveness and safety of homoeopathy in healthcare,” he said.

The report cost taxpayers more than $800,000. The documentary Just One Drop premieres in Australia later this year.

 

 

Executive Summary of Complaint to the Commonwealth Ombudsman regarding the National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC) assessment of homeopathy, 2010-2015

https://www.dropbox.com/s/cncxchgvd1dls41/Executive%20Summary%20to%20Ombudsman%20Complaint%20re%20NHMRC%20Homeopathy%20Review%20%28FINAL%29.pdf?dl=0

 

NHMRC
The National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC) is Australia’s leading expert body promoting the development and maintenance of public and individual health standards.
https://www.nhmrc.gov.au/about

 

AHA
The Australian Homeopathic Association (AHA) is the only national association representing professional homeopaths in Australia.
http://www.homeopathyoz.org/about-aha.html

AHA’s complaint to the Australian Ombudsman was submitted jointly with Complementary Medicines Australia (CMA) and the Australian Traditional Medicine Society (ATMS).

 

Australian Ombudsman
The Australian Ombudsman considers and investigates complaints from people who believe they have been treated unfairly or unreasonably by an Australian Government department or agency.
http://www.ombudsman.gov.au/

 

The Cochrane Collaboration
Cochrane is a global independent network of researchers, professionals, patients, carers, and people interested in health.  Their work is recognized as representing an international gold standard for high quality, trusted information.
http://www.cochrane.org/about-us

11th AHMC National Conference - Sydney 2018