MD, PhD, FMedSci, FRSB, FRCP, FRCPEd

Our new book entitled MORE HARM THAN GOOD? THE MORAL MAZE OF COMPLEMENTARY AND ALTERNATIVE MEDICINE is out. At the moment merely as an e-book, but in a few days the paperback will be available too. Yesterday, Kevin Smith and I were invited to a press briefing at the London SCIENCE MEDIA CENTRE.

On this occasion, Kevin and I explained to the journalists what our book is about. Essentially, it is an analysis of the many ethical issues in alternative medicine. We picked out just a few points which we thought might be of interest. I briefly discussed the fact that much of the research in this area is misleading to the point of being unethical. Kevin explained that this also applies to education and discussed the ethics of commerce.

In the latter context, Kevin briefly mentioned Prince Charles because he had come out with a range of ‘Dutchy Originals Herbal Tinctures’. I never mentioned Charles with a single word, and neither did the subsequent discussion focus on him.

Altogether, we all thought that the press briefing went well. We had good questions, and the journalists showed keen interest in our ethical perspective on alternative medicine.

This morning, I am surprised to see that THE TELEGRAPH, THE DAILY MAIL and apparently also the EXPRESS (I haven’t seen it yet) all carry articles about my alleged war with Prince Charles. The TELEGRAPH’s headline is: Professor reignites war with Prince Charles over homeopathy support. 

While it is, of course, entirely fine that the press reports about this particular aspect, I find it nevertheless disappointing that the essential messages of our book were lost. Nobody can be truly surprised about this, I think.

The real surprise lies elsewhere.

The newspapers cite Clarence House coming to the defence of Prince Charles. A spokesperson is quoted stating “Unfortunately the book misunderstands and misrepresents this position which The Prince has reached after years of talking to experts in many different areas of medicine.”

Yes, that is surprising!

Our book only became available hours before this comment was made. Someone in Clarence House must be a very fast reader.

5 Responses to More harm than good?

  • HRH may have ‘talked to experts’, but he has ignored anything which introduces cognitive dissonance and refuses to enter into any meaningful debate. He is suffering from DKE (see recent posts).

    I have written and asked him to provide the evidence on which he bases his opinion that homeopathy provides any benefit (beyond TLC/placebo responses). His secretary replied promptly that HRH, ‘does not enter into correspondence on the subject’. Likewise, when HRH wrote a guest editorial for the JRSM, myself and journalist Nick Ross responded, somewhat provocatively – yet there was no other response.
    ‘Nuff said.

  • Surely the storm of controversy is counterproductive. It merely stirs up the interest of the rigid, anti-authoritarian, ultra unorthodox, combative personality immune to logic or persuasion?
    Best left to smolder and die.Self deluded practitioners offering a non treatment intended for no real disease for people with no real brains.

  • It will be a great read which I’m looking forward to, and thank you for your continued efforts to battle criminal fraud…something the ‘authorities’ refuse to do properly.
    I think I would have left off the question mark however.
    Since “Alt-logic” practitioners and their ignoramus-followers can neither recognize logic, science or ethics and can only use obfuscating and ad hominem arguments they deserve no quarter…so perhaps the title should have been:
    “All harm, no good….prove otherwise assholes!”

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