Encouraging evidence of the effectiveness of homeopathy.

Facts about the 2015 Australian Report.

Rachel Roberts, Executive Director, and Alexander Tournier, PhD, Founding Director of the Homeopathy Research Institute (HRI), were both panelists at the round table, Homeopathy: Recognizing its legitimacy: an issue of interest to the health of Quebecers, held in Montreal on November 19, 2019. They took this opportunity to rectify the facts concerning the National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC) report published in 2015, known as the “Australian Report”.

Following its publication in 2015, the Australian Report was criticized for many major flaws and irregularities, including a first interim report in 2012, which was only recently made public following access to information requests. In view of these flaws and irregularities, a formal complaint was filed with the Commonwealth Ombudsman in 20161. The latter considered that there was enough evidence to proceed with an investigation. A verdict is expected this fall.

The first interim report notes “encouraging evidence of the efficacy of homeopathy” in five medical conditions including otitis media, upper respiratory tract infection in adults and some side effects of cancer treatment.

In addition, it is important to note that on August 20, 2019, Professor Anne Kelso, Executive Director of the NHMRC, stated with respect to the 20152 report that “contrary to some assertions, the report did not conclude that homeopathy was ineffective”.  Yet, this 2015 report has been widely used to convey that homeopathy is ineffective, which has had a negative impact on homeopathy among the public in several countries, including Canada.