Slovenian MEP Alojz Peterle, who was the first Prime Minister of Slovenia in 1990, addressed delegates of the first European Congress for Homeopathy, which was held in Vienna in November. A number of Faculty of Homeopathy figures were present and active at the Congress, including President Dr Helen Beaumont and past-President Dr Sara Eames.
During Mr Peterle's message he stated that homeopathy has an innovative place in healthcare with regards to cost efficiency and health inequalities, and that citizens all across Europe “increasingly recognise the benefits of Homeopathy”. The full transcript is shown below:
“Honourable speakers, doctors, practitioners, dear guests, ladies and gentlemen,
Thank you very much for inviting me to the first European Homeopathy Congress, which aims to increase the recognition of homeopathy across the European Union and its Member States.
To me homeopathy stands for a holistic, complete, cost-effective and safe approach to promote health, prevent and treat disease. In particular, I am its strong supporter due to its patient-centeredness.
We are obviously facing a growing number of health related challenges: an aging population, rising levels of diseases such as cancer, diabetes and heart disease, mental ill-health and antimicrobial resistance. The situation begs the question as to whether there are better ways to approach healthcare for humans and animals alike.
You have gathered here, because you know that the answer is positive. Yet you are not alone: European citizens increasingly recognise the benefits of a homeopathy and its inherent holistic approach to care.
Therefore, I regret, that there is still little coherence in the way Member States regulate medical doctors and other health professionals practicing homeopathy in the EU. Furthermore, member states’ variable implementation of EU directives for homeopathic medicinal products is negatively affecting access by citizens and providers.
As Co-Chair of the Parliamentary Health Working group, I have been calling for homeopathy to be taken more determinedly by the Commission and Member states. Together with my colleagues from the Parliamentary Interest group on CAM we have been reiterating that Commission should take action to resolve the highly confused and inhibiting regulatory situation that currently exists. I expect that the on-going legislative procedure for Veterinary Medicinal Products will integrate the spirit of the WHO traditional medicine strategy and respect homeopathic specific nature as well.
My firm belief is that homeopathy can play an innovative role in the context of the enormous personal, social and economic cost of chronic disease and health inequalities.
For these reasons and given its widespread demand among European citizens, we need to incorporate ways in which homeopathy can contribute to sustainable healthcare systems in Europe including its role in health maintenance, reduction of use of antibiotics, less invasive and more cost-effective treatment of illness, which are also some of objectives of the EU Health Strategy 2014-2020.
Finally, evidence for effectiveness and cost-saving and of good practice can be observed in different Member States, in particular by the pioneering health service in the Tuscany Region in Italy. The time is ripe to seriously consider homeopathy as both innovation and added value for European citizens.
Thank you for your attention and I wish you a successful session.”
To view the video of Mr Peterle addressing the European Congress for Homeopathy, click here.