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Homoeopathy The Best Bet

Dr. K. Bhardwaj

India is not devoid of its indigenous systems of medicines and cure. And their adherents are not few. That makes sense. That is why today ayurveda and unani systems of medicine are much in news with stress on research. Homoeopathy, though a late starter in the country is yet struggling to come into its own. Otherwise, it follows the eternal law of therapeutics viewing a disease in its totality as an interplay of both physical and mental forces.


Facts do not lie. But these must be coherent. According to a multi-national study by the World Health Organisation, India is over-producing physicians and doctors and has 80,900 more physicians than it can sustain. Citing the rapid expansion of medical schools in India, the study said:

''It is not clear whether the policy behind the rapid expansion was to compensate for migration losses, to create better rural coverage by a massive over spill, or merely a response to a large demand for medical education which was completely unrelated to the economic demand for physicians."

Modelled after British medical schools, the Indian schools produce physicians who tend to be unsuited to work in conditions prevalent in a poor country such as India especially the rural area. The study found a contradiction between the government's official position to providing health care for a large population and the futility of trying to do with more expensive physicians, now being produced. The WHO study also said that the values imposed by the India Medical Council were international in scope and mostly not adapted to the needs of the country. The study noted that Indian medical schools identify themselves too much with the highly expensive urban and curative oriented western medicine, producing specialists with qualifications far removed from the needs of the Nation.

According to the study, India was the world's largest donor of medical manpower with 15,000 of its doctors working abroad.

This is the most revealing commentary by the August body on the socio-economic dimensions of modern system of medical science too widely practiced in the country. Has this latest study set anybody thinking? Wisdom lies in the ability to discover alternatives. If not Goliath, the general public has to find the answer.

India is not devoid of its indigenous systems of medicines and cure. And their adherents are not few. That makes sense. That is why today ayurveda and unani systems of medicine are much in news with stress on research. Homoeopathy, though a late starter in the country is yet struggling to come into its own. Otherwise, it follows the eternal law of therapeutics viewing a disease in its totality as an interplay of both physical and mental forces. In the words of late Dr. Kanjilal, former President of the Homoeopathic Medical Association of India.

"Homoeopathy was not only the most modern of all systems of medicine but it has revolutionised most of the ideas and principles cherished for thousands of years". The various authorities and roaring practitioners maintain this system of medicine as most effective, least harmful and within easy reach of every person.

It is a matter of consolation that about 140 homoeopathic colleges in India are turning out hundreds of qualified doctors every year in this medical discipline as well. They are a special category and ideally suited to Indian conditions. These professional obligates, however suffer from certain social handicaps, the major being the prejudice of a 'sweet pill therapy'. Little knowing that homoeopathy is rather a most valuable member of a composite system which includes sanitation and hygiene, surgery, orthopedics, supplying of deficiencies, psychotherapy, diet and an occasional excursion into all allopathic use of drugs as when we use Digitalis for its physiological action in articular fibrillation or sedatives where the similia principle fails, as it occasionally does, to relieve severe pain; the new system has to be understood in proper perspective and depth. The doyens and deans have to fight for the rightful place of this system of treatment in the anchors of recognition and approbation and impart these institutions the appropriate look that may imprint their status and prestige at a competitive level.

More than anyone else, the World Health Organisation has also to look beyond the gun-shot of its immediate (limited) concern (the allopaths) and realise that viable alternatives do exist in this country that are at once attuned to the needs of the populace and serve a cause of the suffering humanity. It must be brought to the attention of WHO that Dr. Jugal Kishore, former Advisor (Homoeopathy) to the Government of India pleaded at the first All India Scientific Seminar of the Homoeopathic Association of India for the adoption of homoeopathy as the first line of treatment especially in Indian Villages to save people from the damage done by indiscriminate prescription of antibiotics. Antibiotics, he said, were interfering with people's immunity against various diseases.

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