The U.S. government has made a definitive step toward holding homeopathic drug manufacturers accountable for their claims.
In a recent announcement, the U.S. Federal Trade Commission (FTC) said manufacturers of over-the-counter homeopathic remedies must now provide scientific proof that their product actually works. If they can’t do that, they’ll have to include labeling on those products that clearly spells out to customers that there is no scientific evidence backing them up.
“Homeopathy, which dates back to the late-eighteenth century, is based on the view that disease symptoms can be treated by minute doses of substances that produce similar symptoms when provided in larger doses to healthy people,” said the FTC in a statement.
“Many homeopathic products are diluted to such an extent that they no longer contain detectable levels of the initial substance. In general, homeopathic product claims are not based on modern scientific methods and are not accepted by modern medical experts, but homeopathy nevertheless has many adherents.”
The Washington Post reported that U.S. consumers dished out almost $1.2-billion on homeopathic drugs that hadn’t been proven by modern science in 2014.
In its new policy statement, the FTC states that the U.S. Food & Drug Administration issued a policy guide in 1988 that allowed homeopathic drug makers to market their products without proving any effectiveness. Now, those manufacturers will have to provide one of two labels if they can’t provide the necessary scientific proof:
1: There is no scientific evidence that the product works
2: The product’s claims are based only on theories of homeopathy from the 1700s that are not accepted by most modern medical experts.
“To be non-misleading, the product and the claims must also comply with requirements for homeopathic products and traditional homeopathic principles,” said the FTC in its statement.
h/t Global News.