a « black list » of alternative therapies published by the Miviludes
4 French people out of 10 in the line of sight
Since it was established in 2002, the Miviludes has accumulated drifts and abuses. But when publishing a « black list » of alternative therapies in 2012, the interministerial mission crossed the white line, overtly attacking freedom to choose one’s therapy like they attacked freedom of beliefs.
Today, 4 French people out of 10 are using so-called alternative or complementary therapies. These are even welcome in public hospitals. Despite all this, a public body, set under the authority of the Prime Minister, dares to stigmatize all non-conventional therapists, allowing no debate or contradiction.
Miviludes regards New Age as an abuse in itself; in exactly the same way, it decided arbitrarily that all therapies « unproven, complementary or alternative » equate « therapeutic abuses ». In its « Guide » on Health published in April 2012, as in its last yearly reports, Miviludes thus established an actual « black list » of alternative medicines. This phenomenon, said to be « exponential », would be «worrying because of the number of victims ». One can rightly ask what sustains such a claim since Miviludes, a little further, admits that they have no clue about the size of the phenomenon: «Accidents connected to unconventional practices are never recorded for the time being. » The blacklist includes such broadly used practices as naturopathy or sophrology.
As usual for them, the mission tries to hold an isolated and outdated position while ignoring experts’ opinions. Because to answer the demand of patients, hospitals and clinics decided to develop alternative medicines, more and mores praticed on their premises. Supported by the 17 recommendations of a recent report co-written by Prof. Fagon and Dr Viens-Bitker, Assistance Publique – Hôpitaux de Paris (AP) – which manages 39 hospitals and more than 22,000 beds in Paris and Ile-de-France area – announced for example on last July 11 that they had created a hospital-university Comittee for complementary medicines. AP wants to « contribute with research to determine the place of such treatments in therapeutic strtegies », in order to « take global care of patients ». Among 9 subjects of clinical research already I/P, one focuses on sophrology (1) itself.
« Any new way of thinking is a sectarian abuse »
Like in other fields, Miviludes takes an ideological position and is not interested in facts. Any different way of thinking, any research for betterment or new ideas is stigmatized at once.
Creating false data in assimilating alternative madicines and abuses, Miviludes goes even further in its efforts towards intellectual dictatorship: « Abstracts from the yearly reports of Miviludes on the dangerousness of such or such method or on groups or on organisations can be used as body of proof ». Miviludes intends thus to forge itself the evidence which will prove them right. Isn’t it a perfect way to become the supreme judge dictating to French people the way they should take care of themselves ? This is hard to believe. By the way, what would be the legal value of such a list, issued by an interministerial mission on unknown criteria, without any serious investigation and out of any legal proceedings ?
The courts already answered this question. The outrageous « blacklist » of 172 spiritual and religious groups created in 1996 by another parliamentary commission has no legal value. It was cancelled by a circular letter by the Prime Minister on May 27, 2005 and all administrative interdictions whatsoever refering to this list have been systematically cancelled by the courts.
The arbitrary list of alternative medicines targeted by Miviludes includes many practices, some of them with a long and ancient history, which are well known in other countries because of their efficiency. « We have been attacked for 30 years without any evidence », answers the Organisation of professional naturopaths. « Today, if you advise someone to eat in a healthy way, to change one’s habits of life, it is enough to be suspected of sectarian abuse… ». According to Evelyne Mathelet, president of Ayurveda France : « Miviludes is an epiphenomenon in comparison to the scale of our heritage, which has been allying health and philosophy for 5,000 years. There were practicioners in ayurveda before Miviludes, and there will always be after them. »
Questioning medical confidentiality
Not only does Miviludes threaten the freedom of choice of one’s therapy, but they are also keen to violate the medical secret. Abstracts of the yearly reports of Miviludes on the dangerousness of such or such method or groups or organisations can be used « as body of proof » by the MD, who is kindly invited to « signal » to the Miviludes, as well as to the Prosecutor, any individual he estimates « at a sectarian risk ».
The climate generated by Miviludes is such that this call to denunciation has not been openly exposed so far. But how could the Order of Medical Doctors accept to be dictated ethical rules by civil servants (even if they belong to Miviludes) who have no medical expertise?
Miviludes attempts once again to impose the law of the strongest, with the use of fear: the individual who defends liberties finds himself accused of covering so-called « sectarian abuses ».
Any practitioner, as well as individuals using such practices, may fear to find himself in front of a court one day or another, on the sole « evidence » of a report disconnected from the facts in the field and drawn arbitrarily, not taking into account the evaluation of results. But if it is legitimate that a government acts to get the law applied in case of abuses, he has no right to dictate his will on bodies and souls.
Some human rights experts even claim that Miviludes is willfully trying to protect the vested interests of a mediacl monopoly shaken by sanitary scandals, in front of the explosion in the number of therapies. An understanding comforted at its head by the nomination of Dr Serge Blisko, a former MP, with little chance to revert the trend. During his first interview on France Culture on August 3, 2012, he confirmed the orientation of Miviludes regarding alternative medicines, considered as having « a most serious hold » on individuals. Establishing an enquiry commission on sects and Health in the Senate derives directly from this climate of mistrust and suspicions fueled by Miviludes.
The new government gives attention to the expectations of French people who want to have a free choice when they come to the end of their life. Is it capable to hear that they also want to have a free choice of the best way to cure and heal themselves? Because it is up to the patients to have the last word. And what they want is to choose the therapeutical procedure that suits them, that this pleases Miviludes and its administrative dogma or not.
(1) Source Petit Larousse dictionary – a method aiming at mastering painful sensations and psychic discomfort by relaxation techniques close to hypnosis
source : http://www.ethique-liberte.org/
Translation CAP Liberté de Conscience