Homeopathy Regulated in Ontario

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Dr. Stowe was also a homeopath.

When you ask most Canadians, they either have never heard of homeopathy, they confuse it with the use of herbs, or they think it is some kind of catchall term for natural or holistic medicine. The reverse is true outside of North America, homeopathy is very well known, well loved, and in many countries it is an integral part of the national health care system. Homeopathy is the world’s most frequently used medical modality of complementary /alternative medicine according to the World Health Organization.
Back in the early 1900’s, homeopathy was one of the most popular forms of medicine in North America. There were more than 20 homeopathic medical schools and hospitals/asylums and one out of every 6 physicians was a homeopath. In Ontario, homeopathy was the first system of medicine to be regulated in 1859 and remained regulated until 1970. However by the 1950’s, for political and financial reasons along with the increasing success of conventional modern medicine, homeopathy was headed towards extinction.
The Ontario government was asked by the Ontario Homeopathic Association years back to re-regulate the profession of homeopathy for the safety of the public. Over the last 40 years homeopaths were still practicing and homeopathy itself was gaining an interest and resurgence. The primary objective of the Ontario Homeopathic Association (OHA) was founded in 1992 to re-establish Homeopathy as a recognized health care system in Ontario, and to form a united and regulated body of qualified practitioners who provide safe, effective and professional homeopathic health care to the public.
The Homeopathy Act of 2007 formalized regulation for all professional homeopaths, and created the Ontario College of Homeopaths to which all Homeopathic practitioners must belong, once the regulation process is completed. The regulation process is being led by a transitional council, which is currently developing standards of practice, entry to practice requirements, standards of professional ethics and standards for continuing competence among members. This transitional process was initiated in April 2015.
So what is homeopathy then? With the rich history homeopathy has, we know that it is not some new age alternative medicine; it was developed over 200 years ago. It’s a complete system of medicine focusing on the person rather than the disease but takes into the consideration the pathology and symptomology. We know that if 10 people have a headache, each person will experience their headache uniquely. Therefore the homeopathic medicines prescribed are just as unique and individual as the person being treated. One of the homeopathic principles is based on the principle of “like cures like” which dates back to Hippocrates (460-377 BC), ‘Father of Medicine’.
“By similar things a disease is produced and through the application of the like is cured”.

In other words, a substance that produces symptoms in a healthy person, similar to those experienced by someone sick, is capable of curing that disease. Currently there are over 6000 substances used as homeopathic remedies.
Another two principles homeopaths prescribe by, are Minimum dose, and single remedy. Homeopaths only give enough medicine and only one type at a time to affect a healing reaction. This means less aggravations, side effects and less confusion as to which remedy is helping.
How does the new re-regulation of homeopathy affect you? With so much information out there for people seeking help, those who choose homeopathy now can feel confident that the homeopath they choose is qualified and competent. Overtime we will see more and more insurance providers offering homeopathy as a modality although some do already cover professional homeopaths. A homeopath that is registered through the College of Homeopaths will show their designation by calling themselves a Registered Homeopath. This is the only term they can legally and lawfully claim. However, it is still good practice to interview your homeopath first.
When I was renovating my basement I chose not a first year electrician but someone who was had more experience and more qualifications because I knew that I wanted a competent job done in a timely manner. It is possible, that I paid more for this valuable service, but it was worth it. You would also never consider letting your hairdresser fix your car. Why would you ever consider a store clerk or a nutritionist, a chiropractor, or a kinesiologist (etc.) to prescribe your homeopathic medicines? Go see a professional, they are listed on The College of Homeopaths website. Your health should be the most valuable asset you have and well worth the cost of taking care of.