Integrative Medicine at risk

Integrative healthcare choices under threat

The Medical Board of Australia (MBA) is seeking your feedback on new guidelines. We’ve made it easy for you to have your say – your response below will be sent as a submission to the MBA on your behalf. For details, see background provided.

Provide your feedback to the MBA here:

  • You may wish to include any or all of the following points in your submission:
    • Why you support patient access to Integrative & complementary medicine
    • How Integrative & complementary medicine has helped you, your family & friends
    • Reasons why you use Integrative & complementary medicine
    • What it will mean to you if the MBA imposes restrictions on Integrative practitioners

  • "To the Medical Board of Australia,
    [this will be automatically included]
  • Sincerely,
    [your name will be automatically included]"

By clicking submit, you consent to your submission being forwarded to the Medical Board of Australia. Your submissions will not be disclosed to any third party unless you have provided consent to do so or in the event it is required by law.

BACKGROUND – 1 in 3 patient’s choice of doctor under threat:

The Medical Board of Australia (MBA) is seeking public feedback on new guidelines targeting medical doctors who integrate ‘complementary medicines and emerging treatments’ into their practice. If adopted, Integrative doctors may face restrictions on treatments they currently offer that are not considered “conventional” medicine.

This may include bans on use of vitamins, minerals, herbal supplements, natural therapies and diagnostic testing, with broader impacts on the complementary medicine and natural therapies sector.

What are the main concerns?

As well as restricting clinical autonomy, Integrative doctors who typically provide longer consultations to understand root causes of illness may be restricted to providing the “conventional” 10 minute consultation, thereby diminishing diagnostic capabilities and individualised treatment plans. This is not because their recommendations are unsafe, but just because they are not “conventional”.

By framing them as ‘fringe’, the guidelines also place the regulated traditional medicine professions of chiropractic, osteopathy, Chinese medicine and acupuncture (TCM) at risk.

It may also lead to medical and allied healthcare professionals being unfairly and unreasonably targeted by vexatious complaints to the Australian Health Practitioner Regulation Agency (AHPRA).

The MBA is presenting two Options. Option 1: No change to the current guidelines, or Option 2: Tighten regulation of practitioners providing integrative treatments (their preferred option).

Let the MBA know why you value a holistic approach to healthcare and support doctors’ right to provide new and innovative practices, including complementary medicines (Option 1).

Public pressure (i.e. YOU) succeeded in moving Government on health fund rebates for natural therapies. Let’s do it here too!

Click here for more information and link to the MBA guidelines.

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