Only If You Pay For Your Prescription!
It is indeed a sad day when the RLHIM – formerly the Royal London Homeopathic Hospital – has to write to its patients to say they must now pay for their prescriptions for homeopathic and herbal medicines as these will no longer be available on the NHS.
Built with funds raised by grateful patients and supporters in the 1800s, the hospital has a long, proud history, including 70 years of service within the NHS. The hospital and its staff remain to provide services, but its spirit, its raison d’être and its countless innovations, making it the UK’s finest centre for integrated healthcare, will be put at risk.
Camden CCG (Clinical Commissioning Group) has told the hospital that it will not fund homeopathic or herbal prescriptions, which includes the Anthroposophic medicine, Iscador, used as a complementary treatment in cancer care.
The hospital is in the process of writing to its patients to explain the situation and inform them that they will now have to pay for these medicines themselves.
It is our understanding that Camden has never held a public consultation on withdrawing these services, but say the decision is in line with their Procedures of Limited Clinical Effectiveness policy (PoLCE), which is in line with national recommendations based on clinical evidence. These inform national guidelines set out by NHS England (firstname.lastname@example.org).
The actions of Camden CCG and the guidance of NHS England will, without doubt, have a negative effect on patient choice and the continuing success of integrating the best of conventional and complementary medicine within the NHS.