‘Integrative Care’ beds to disappear from Glasgow hospital

A National Health Service board in Glasgow has decided to remove seven inpatient beds at the Centre for Integrative Care at Gartnavel Hospital.  NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde voted to end funding the beds at a meeting on 20.12.16 in order to save money; services will continue to be provided on an outpatient basis.  The NHS Centre for Integrative Care is the only such service in Scotland and offers a range of alternative therapies for people with long-term conditions such as chronic pain, low energy, low mood and anxiety. It previously operated as the Homeopathic Hospital.

Diabetic woman dies after ‘slapping therapy’

Three people have been arrested on suspicion of manslaughter after a 71-year-old diabetic woman died following a workshop in Seend, Wiltshire based around slapping as a form of ‘self-healing’.  It is understood that one of those arrested was Hongchi Xiao, a Chinese therapist running the paida lajin retreat. He promotes the controversial therapy as ‘a way of purging toxins from patients’ by slapping them or getting them to slap themselves. Last year, Hongchi was questioned by police in Australia after the death of a seven-year-old boy from Sydney who had attended one of his workshops.

Irish “bishop” convicted for unauthorised supply of ‘miracle’ cure for autism

A leading Co Kildare member of the Genesis II Church was convicted at Naas District Court yesterday for manufacturing a miracle cure which is said to cure autism.

Patrick Merlehan, Newtown House, Newtown, Moone, Co Kildare, was charged with manufacturing a product, not in accordance with the Health Products Regulatory Authority, contrary to 2007 Regulations, on November 6, 2014.

The man who calls himself a “Bishop” of the the Genesis II Church was also charged with placing Miracle Mineral Solution( MMS) on the market, contrary to 2007, control of placing on the market regulations.

The conviction came about after authorities were alerted about the malpractice by skeptical activist Fiona O’Leary, founder of ART Autistic Rights Together. (http://autisticrightstogether.ie/index.php/)

Severe hypercalcaemia in a child due to alternative medicine

Police were called to investigate a naturopath who had advised the family of a 4-year-old boy to give their son a combination of 12 different supplements and ‘natural therapies’ including calcium, vitamin D, camel milk and zinc. The boy had been vomiting and constipated for three weeks and lost 6lb (3kg) in weight before he was taken to accident and emergency and diagnosed with severe hypercalcaemia – very high calcium levels in his blood. Writing in the British Medical Journal’s Case Reports, doctors from Barts Health NHS Trust in London said, “Many families view these therapies as safer ‘natural’ options. But as this case demonstrates, there can be significant adverse effects which may go unrecognised due to lack of monitoring, recognition and experience with these therapies.”

The boy made a full recovery two weeks later.