Monday, May 18, 2009

Swiss Voters' Blow to "Evidence based" Medicine Will Muddle Regulators

Two thirds of Swiss voters called for mandatory insurance to include coverage of alternative medicines. This vote reflects the growing popularity of "natural" therapies and exotic imports such as Chinese or Ayurvedic medicine. The inclusion of complementary medicines will predictably increase global costs in mandatory insurance and lead to higher premiums.


The intrusion of paying third parties and their bureaucratic watch dogs in the alternative therapy sector will alter the crucial one to one relationship between patient and health healer: this will inevitably dull the placebo effect linked to the faith and magic that goes with alternative therapies. The good news is that mandatory coverage of non-scientific complementary therapies will make it difficult for mandatory insurance regulators to continue using the "evidence based" myth as a tool for rationing orthodox medical care.


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