MEETING OF THE COUNCIL OF THE EUROPEAN UNION (EMPLOYMENT, SOCIAL POLICY, HEALTH AND CONSUMER AFFAIRS)
Tuesday 1 December 2009
Innovative incentives for effective antibiotics
EU policy currently focuses on reducing the use of antibiotics by educating citizens and prescribers on the proper use of antibiotic treatment. The second pillar of the policy is the promotion of Research and Development for new and more effective antibiotics. We call on the EU to add a third pillar to the policy, recognising the role complementary and alternative medicine can play in the treatment of widespread infections.
Antibiotic resistance - a global health problem
The European Centre of Disease prevention and Control (ECDC) warns about the threat of antibiotic resistance and calls for antibiotics to be used far more responsibly in the treatment of infectious diseases1. Antibiotics are of no use in viral infections and they should not be used in uncomplicated bacterial infections such as light ear, throat and sinus infections2.
The ECDC and the World Health Organisation (WHO) warn that infectious micro-organisms have become increasingly resistant to existing antibiotics3. Over-use and misuse of antibiotics has caused the development of lethal antibiotic resistant micro-organisms. They are now also suspected of causing cancer4.
Replacement products are proving difficult to find. Governments and researchers across the world are searching for alternatives.
Homeopathy – effective in infectious diseases
Research shows that homeopathy can serve as an effective alternative to antibiotics in a range of infectious conditions for which they have been commonly used5-13.
Out of 500 patients suffering from upper respiratory complaints, 82% receiving homeopathy improved within 14 days, compared to 67 % treated conventionally10. In another study with 169 children, those receiving homeopathic treatment had significantly less symptoms and shorter duration of disease compared to other children11. Their parents also had less time away from work.
Homeopathy is effective in treating recurrent ear infections in children7-8. Over 70% had no ear infections after homeopathy, compared to 57 % percent receiving conventional drugs8. Out of 230 children those receiving homeopathic treatment recovered 2.4 times faster than others7.