By Dr Mukesh Batra
I believe it is extremely important to practice what you study. Why would one study homeopathy and then want to practice allopathy? I strongly feel that homeopaths should stick to this pure and natural form of this medicine derived from plants and minerals. It is the most beneficial and affordable form of medicine known to have cured severe chronic ailments.
Homeopaths are qualified doctors and they study as much as allopaths, including subjects like anatomy, physiology, surgery, obstetrics and gynecology. The only thing they don't study is pharmacology, which explains the chemical reactions of the drugs and its prescriptions. Then why opt to practice that forcibly? I am completely against the decision to allow homeopaths to practice allopathy after the one-year course. If this comes into effect, homeopathy will gradually become less popular and lose its charm.
The government argues that the decision is being taken to cater to the shortage of doctors, mainly in the rural areas. Instead, the government should have popularised homeopathy and offered this branch of medicine to the people. Homeopathy is not dependent on diagnostics. Therefore, x-ray machines, CT scans and other such costly equipment are not needed and it is perfect to be practiced in rural areas. It is not only proven that this branch of medicine is effective, but also affordable. By coming up with this 'bridge course', the government has, in fact, complicated things and mixed up two different fields of medicine.
The World Health Organization has acknowledged that homeopathy is the second largest system of medicine across the world. It is also the fastest growing with a 30 per cent increase in homeopathy practice reported every year since last the five years. This system of medicine has seen such growth only because of the safety associated with it. People are now waking up to safe medicine. A majority of cases we deal with are 'drug-related diseases', meaning patients who have suffered due to the side-effects of allopathic drugs. Homeopathy, on the other hand, has none and is thus extremely popular when it comes to treating children.
While there is no denying that we cannot do without modern medicine, the government should encourage other fields of medicine to supplement allopathy. Not only homeopathy, but ayurveda and unani are also known to yield the best of results, and authorities should strengthen the healthcare system by enhancing each field of medicine instead of mixing two varied ones. Also, what is the guarantee that the homeopaths will practice in rural areas after completing the one-year pharmacology course?