ACCC tackles Homeopathy Plus! Whooping Cough claims
Homeopathy Plus! Pty Ltd has removed representations from its website that the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission considered to be misleading and deceptive and that could lead to serious health risks for consumers.
The representations were made on the 'Whooping Cough – Homeopathic Prevention and Treatment' page which has since been removed from the Homeopathy Plus! website.
"The combination of claims that the vaccine was ineffective and that the homeopathic remedies listed on the page were an alternative prevention and treatment regime elevated this matter to one of extreme concern," ACCC Chairman Rod Sims said.
The ACCC examined content on the Homeopathy Plus! website following a complaint from the medical profession. The ACCC considered that the Homeopathy Plus! claims that the current whooping cough vaccine is dangerous and ineffective, while the homeopathic remedy is a proven and safe alternative, were likely to be misleading or deceptive.
Reliance on these claims may influence consumers to avoid the whooping cough vaccine and rely solely on the homeopathic approach for treatment and prevention of whooping cough, which is strongly discouraged by medical professionals. Whooping cough is a serious respiratory infection which can cause a long coughing illness and is life threatening for babies.
The ACCC result was considerably assisted by the engagement of the Therapeutic Goods Administration and NSW Fair Trading with Homeopathy Plus! Pty Ltd in resolving this matter.
The ACCC will continue to monitor the Homeopathy Plus! Pty Ltd site for potential breaches of the Australian Consumer Law.
Release # NR 086/12
Issued: 3rd May 2012