On the whole, these “treatments” are outside the Health Services, but some (Homeopathy) are very cheap and within it. Just because they are cheap does not mean they should be accepted. Many patients back two horses, starting with the homeopathic for self limiting conditions, but changing to conventional treatments if fearful. Deliberately depending on charities for palliative and terminal care is another matter..
An investigation by the clinical scientist Les Rose highlighted a number of charities that discourage vaccination, encourage the use of homeopathic remedies for serious conditions and promote energy healing. These charities — including the Vaccination Awareness Network, the Maun Homeopathy Project, Gentle Touch Healing and the Keys College of Radionics — do not operate to benefit the public and should have their charitable status revoked.
Not only do such organisations represent a waste of donations, they encourage vulnerable people to take treatments that are not efficacious and can cause harm if used in place of effective remedies. That these charities are allowed to continue operating with charitable status shows the Charity Commission has failed in its duty.
Since July 2014 complaints have been made about a number of charities that promote dubious “health” practices and we are dismayed that the commission has apparently taken no effective action to address these concerns. If the commission cannot ensure charities meet the requirements of the Charities Act then there must be a full inquiry as to whether it is able to fulfil its statutory duty.