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Lessons from homeopathy for the conventional practitioner

Homeopathic remedies have not reproducibly been shown to be better than placebo in clinical trials and as such do not have a place in evidence-based medicine.  However, knowledge of homeopathy can provide valuable insights for the practitioners and policy makers, specifically: 

Careful attention to the patient.  Homeopathy stresses an intimate interaction between the physician and patient to a degree not now seen in the modern practice of medicine.  Many surveys have shown that patient experiences with alternative health care providers are more satisfying vs. traditional physician office visits.  Reimbursement issues prevent the physician from spending enough time with the patient to understand all of the factors that comprise their illness.  This results in less time for patient history and physical examination and more time devoted to impersonal invasive tests.  In addition, aspects of the practice of medicine are being increasingly shifted to paraprofessionals.  While this may be less expensive for the health care provider, it can fragment the experience for the patient and provide less time for meaningful interaction with the physician.  
Importance of the placebo response.  The placebo response is the physician's best friend.   Studies have shown that one of the most  critical factors in the magnitude of the placebo response is physician enthusiasm. Since the placebo effect is a major contributor to the response to both conventional AND alternative therapies, the conventional medical community should attempt to maximize the psychosocial factors that contribute to it. 
Patients are seeking out homeopathy and it is making them feel better.  If patients were satisfied with conventional care, homeopathy would no longer exist.  Every health care provider must examine the reasons for patient migration to alternative therapies.  It is because the conventional medical community is not providing the degree of medical care and advice that they want.  Many physicians become defensive with this notion, but the fact is that some people are seeking medical attention elsewhere and are reporting satisfaction.  Rather than rely on debunking of alternative practices as a primary defense, perhaps physicians should investigate how to structure the delivery of medicine to provide better patient satisfaction.