The Medical Board of Australia is considering options for clearer regulation of medical practitioners who provide complementary or unconventional medicine or emerging treatments.
The Medical Board of Australia is considering options for clearer regulation of medical practitioners who provide complementary or unconventional medicine or emerging treatments. filmfoto

What do you think of alternative medicinal treatments?

THE Medical Board of Australia is seeking feedback from the community regarding regulation of medical practitioners who provide complementary and unconventional medicine and emerging treatments.

The board is considering options for clearer regulation of those medical practitioners.

"Concerns have been raised by stakeholders about this area of practice suggesting that additional guidance for medical practitioners is needed to support safe practice and ensure safeguards for patients," the spokesperson said.

The source explained some of the areas of medical practice with more specific examples of the procedures and treatments being offered, and where some concerns have been raised to the board, are complementary and alternative medicine, Lyme-like illness and Lyme disease, stem cell therapies (haematopoietic stem cell transplants), platelet rich plasma (PRP) - particularly when promoted for aesthetic purposes, anti-ageing cosmetic and regenerative medicine, plus performance enhancing treatments and health and wellness therapies.

In regards to medicinal cannabis, changes to Commonwealth and state and territory legislation allows for lawful access to medicinal cannabis through the TGA Authorised Prescriber Scheme and Special Access Scheme.

As the TGA has published clinical guidance for prescribers of medical cannabis, it may not be covered by the board's regulation activity.

The board is proposing the following definition for complementary and unconventional medicine and emerging treatments:

"Complementary and unconventional medicine and emerging treatments include any assessment, diagnostic technique or procedure, diagnosis, practice, medicine, therapy or treatment that is not usually considered to be part of conventional medicine, whether used in addition to, or instead of, conventional medicine."

This also includes unconventional use of approved medical devices and therapies.

The organisation will then review all the feedback provided through the submissions and will further consider the options.

"Many submissions are from patients who describe the importance of complementary medicine in their lives. We value this feedback and we will take all of it into consideration," the spokesperson said.

Written submissions can be sent via email, marked 'Consultation on complementary and unconventional medicine and emerging treatments' to medboardconsultation@ahpra.gov.au by Sunday, June 30.



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