Conflict of interest statement: No conflicts declared
AGAINST HOMEOPATHY – A UTILITARIAN PERSPECTIVE
Version of Record online: 14 FEB 2011
© 2011 Blackwell Publishing Ltd.
Volume 26, Issue 8, pages 398–409, October 2012
How to Cite
SMITH, K. (2012), AGAINST HOMEOPATHY – A UTILITARIAN PERSPECTIVE. Bioethics, 26: 398–409. doi: 10.1111/j.1467-8519.2010.01876.x
- Issue online: 13 SEP 2012
- Version of Record online: 14 FEB 2011
- alternative medicine;
- complementary medicine;
I examine the positive and negative features of homeopathy from an ethical perspective. I consider: (a) several potentially beneficial features of homeopathy, including non-invasiveness, cost-effectiveness, holism, placebo benefits and agent autonomy; and (b) several potentially negative features of homeopathy, including failure to seek effective healthcare, wastage of resources, promulgation of false beliefs and a weakening of commitment to scientific medicine. A utilitarian analysis of the utilities and disutilities leads to the conclusion that homeopathy is ethically unacceptable and ought to be actively rejected by healthcare professionals.