The fundament of current healthcare system is based on medical practice emphasized on science and evidence-based treatment or drugs. This system is called allopathy where professional healthcare workers are licensed to mitigate symptoms and diseases using their scientific knowledge.
In contrast, homeopathy is a complementary treatment based on the concept of “like cure like” where illness is treated with ultra-dilute substances that cause similar symptoms in healthy people and trigger the body’s natural defenses. However, homeopathic products are derived from natural products where their efficacy are not scientifically tested and clinically approved. They can pose unknown side effects to the patients. Besides, diluted homeopathic dosages may lower medicinal effect of diseases such as diabetes and hypertension which need accurate dosage of treatments.
Although there is high risk of practicing homeopathy due to lack of scientific evidence, homeopathy is gaining importance as people believe it brings lesser side effects as modern medicines. Since pharmacists are highly educated professionals with understanding of science, they have the responsibility to advise the public on appropriate use of homeopathy to prevent medication errors.
Firstly, pharmacists should not recommend and sell homeopathic products that are not clinically approved because being a pharmacist is to apply knowledge, experience, and skills to assure optimal outcomes for patients. If a patient requests advice on homeopathy, the pharmacist should advise patient to approach scientific treatment based on the patient’s condition. Lastly, pharmacists should also ensure patients who take a homeopathic product to not stop taking their prescribed medication.