Friends of Science in Medicine
WELCOME FROM THE PRESIDENT OF FRIENDS OF SCIENCE IN MEDICINE
Welcome to our website. We hope you visit often. Our Association, “Friends of Science in Medicine” (FSM) was formed at the end of 2011 to emphasise the importance of having scientific evidence of clinical effectiveness underpin the delivery of health care in Australia. The founders of FSM were and are concerned about the increasing number of interventions on offer to Australians that fall far short of this standard as well as the inadequacy of the measures that are supposed to protect consumers from such practices.
Of immediate concern was the extent to which pseudosciences (Homeopathy, Iridology, Reflexology, Energy Medicine, etc) and other "health" interventions are being taught within our universities. Many universities and other tertiary institutions teach these under the banner of "health sciences," despite the fact that they have no scientific credibility, do not conform to scientific methodology and are not evidence-based. A lack of appropriate critical analysis can confer undeserved credibility on useless and sometimes dangerous approaches to healthcare and, while FSM supports a critical examination of what these activities involve, that should not mean an endorsement of their scientifically suspect claims.
We informed the scientific and clinical communities of the establishment of FSM and sought support. We were overwhelmed with encouragement, from home and abroad. As of January 2013, we have nearly 1000 leading scientists, clinicians, lawyers and consumer advocates, listed herein, as supporters. We have no links to any industry.
While suspect university courses provided the impetus for the creation of FSM all aspects of the penetration of pseudoscience into our healthcare system concerns us. Speaking with a strong voice provided by our constituency we will make every effort to ensure that Australians have access to interventions and medicines backed by evidence of their clinical effectiveness and that precious public health dollars are not wasted funding spurious treatments, many of which have actually been proven to be ineffective.
Modern Medicine is committed to a model of care that provides patients with interventions supported by credible scientific evidence. On the other hand most of what is encompassed under the heading of 'Complementary and Alternative’ medicine (CAM), has not been subjected to scientific scrutiny, and frequently compromises, rather than improves, the health of many.
We strongly support sound research to determine the effectiveness or otherwise of any biologically plausible areas of ‘alternative’ interventions. We do not seek to prevent consumers from making informed choices about alternative approaches, but wish to see the public better informed and therefore protected from false claims.
With the efforts of hundreds of like-minded and knowledgeable Friends, we can attempt to ensure that modern healthcare is underpinned by good science.
You will find much more about us and the outcomes we seek in the pages that follow. We will keep the content fresh and would welcome your feedback about our work as well as about the effectiveness of this site.
Professor John Dwyer AO
Founding President FSM