Another Poll About The NHS
At the time, the answers were split about 50-50, although now (with 5 hours remaining to vote) it stands at 55-45 in favour of banning homeopathy.
Quite apart from the issues I discussed yesterday about the lack of clear point to such polls, I think it is worth noting a similar one on the website of Dr Nancy Malik (who has kindly contributed here before), where the question is:
Malik’s views on the matter are clear:
Billions of pounds pumped in every year but the state and level of health of a UK citizen is not improving. Instead 10,000 people in Britain die each year due to side effects of drugs. More and more people are queuing up for NHS.
What’s wrong? Think about it!
Save Tax payers money. Don’t let it go down the drain.
Commenters on her site are already doing a good job of dissecting the claims made. Pedantically, I guess it could be said that “a” UK citizen’s health is not improving, in fact I’m sure there are thousands of them for whom that is true. But, of course, that is not what is meant here.
Incidentally, I can’t help but wonder how many people in Britain die each year due to not taking proper medication.
Anyway, the point about this “counter-poll” is that it has backfired on Dr Malik somewhat, with the results at 90% in favour of public money being spent on pharmaceuticals.
Now, we don’t know that the people voting in this poll are the same as those in the Guardian’s. Also, it turns out that it’s possible to vote more than once in this poll. However, I suspect there will be some overlap, which allows for tentative conclusions to be drawn about people’s attitudes.
Specifically, I feel reassured that, whilst many may want to preserve special rights for homeopathy despite a lack of evidence, most really do view it as “complementary” rather than “alternative” medicine. That is to say, that homeopathic products can be used harmlessly (because they have no effects) alongside “conventional” (read: proper) treatments. Indeed, the main harm most skeptics see in the business of CAM comes from when patients (victims?) become convinced that they can be cured by using only the “alternative” product.
There’s hope yet.