Around 400 health experts, the majority of them doctors and researchers, have signed a letter sent to the Spanish minister for Health, María Luisa Cancedo, calling for immediate action against pseudoscientific therapies such as homeopathy. On too many occasions, they say, these remedies have led patients to abandon conventional medical treatments which has caused their death.
The specialists refer to cases such as that of Rosa Morillo, an economist who died last year after rejecting specialist treatment when she was diagnosed with a malign tumour in her breast. Her condition suffered a major deterioration after several months of treatment with only homeopathic products.
The signatories of the letter call for the minister to use the law - or make new ones if necessary - to prevent registered doctors from offering their patients pseudotherapies; to prevent people without the precise training and qualifications to publicly offer therapies with no scientific basis; and to prevent pseudoscientific products, such as homeopathic remedies, from being sold in pharmacies "despite being ineffective".
Spain's Asamblea Nacional de Homeopatía, which represents doctors, pharmacists and vets who specialise in homeopathy, responded with a statement. Its signatories reject homeopathy being offered as a unique therapy or a substitute for surgery or chemotherapy, but support its use as a complementary treatment and one to reduce side effects.