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December 3, 2019  

Wikipedia's Disdain Towards Alternative Medical Experts: The Case of Naturopathy

Richard Gale & Gary Null PhD

Progressive Radio Network, December 3, 2019

 

Americans are increasingly turning to Complementary and Alternative Medical (CAM) systems for their healthcare needs. This trend has been underway for several decades. This has been perceived as competition by the medical establishment. The reasons for this growing popularity includes the cost of conventional treatments, rising out-of-pocket expenses, serious drug adverse effects, and physician and diagnostic errors continue to plague the orthodox medical establishment. More than ever people are questioning whether conventional medical treatments are as safe and effective as promised.  According to the federal National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health, approximately 83 million American adults (38%) used some type of CAM protocol or treatment in 2018, the most popular being supplements such as Omega-3, glucosamine, coenzyme Q-10, melatonin and botanical supplements such as ginseng, ginkgo, and Echinacea. In 2007, the National Health Interview Survey calculated there were approximately 354 million visits to CAM practitioners; today that figure is significantly higher as CAM enters mainstream medical practice and is gradually being covered by insurance companie.  Outside of the US, surveys show CAM is more popular. In South Korea 75% of the population used a CAM treatment annually and 52% of Australians use CAM regularly. These healing modalities include acupuncture, Chiropractic, homeopathy, naturopathy, the Chinese and Indian Ayurveda medical systems, orthomolecular and energy medicines, meditation and stress-reduction techniques, Chinese martial arts and yoga, nutritional counseling, and a wide range of massage and mind-body therapies.

Wikipedia's co-founder Jimmy Wales claims to hold high standards of objectivity and balance in the content of the online encyclopedia and the integrity of his volunteer army of editors.  Indeed this is largely true for non-controversial content where economic, political, social factors hold no consequence. Yet, when it comes to the composition and editing of CAM systems and natural healthcare, in our opinion Wikipeida is an arsenal of misinformation and lies; we believe it has become a malignant growth to serve the ideological and financial purposes of select individuals and groups Wales has shown favor towards.  A group of individuals and organizations, collectively known as Skeptics, who assert they represent “science-based medicine” now portend to be the final arbiters of what is and is not sound medical practice. However, it is our opinion the Skeptics are grossly biased, widely uneducated about CAM, and are both anti-science and anti-health. Skeptics consistently refuse to accept the enormous volume of published CAM research because it is contrary to Skepticism's regressive understanding about medicine and limited to a pharmacological model.  

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