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Healthy People 2030 Plan - DHHS Comments

September 15, 2017

OPPORTUNITY TO GIVE COMMENTS TO DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES (DHHS) HEALTHY PEOPLE 2030 PLAN

On September 5 and 6, National Center for Homeopathy (NCH) Board of Directors members, Glenna Tinney and Tina Quirk, attended the DHHS-sponsored Healthy People 2030 meeting in Washington DC. This was a meeting of the Secretary’s Advisory Committee on Prevention and Health Promotion to present the draft of their work in creating the mission, goals, and actions for the decade of 2020-2030. It was also an opportunity for them to receive public comment from advocacy organizations and other individuals. Their overall objective is to improve the health of all Americans.

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The Healthy People 2030 draft has few references for using integrative health disciplines and approaches. NCH’s goal for attending the meeting was to promote the inclusion of homeopathy and integrative health measures into the national prevention and health plan. Oral comments to this point were given by Ms. Tinney at the meeting. 

Our second goal in attending was to observe the government in action and learn more about the process that leads to the creation of national health policy. This is an ongoing goal of the NCH Public Policy and Advocacy Committee, so we can have more effective input and influence and meet the NCH mission of promoting and broadening consumer access to homeopathy.

MEMBERS CAN HELP IN ADVOCACY

NCH is asking our members to contribute written comments to this committee. We have outlined proposed comments below that you can adapt in your own words. You can insert one or more of these comments into the general comments section on the online form. This is a way for NCH members to exert influence in the creation of the national health policy, and importantly, to make “homeopathy” a familiar word and health care option with national health policy makers.

Comments are due by September 29 and can be uploaded onto the Healthy People website at  https://www.healthypeople.gov/2020/About-Healthy-People/Development-Healthy-People-2030/Public-Comment/Items-for-comment

Proposed Comments:

·         The Healthy People 2030 framework should emphasize wellness approaches such as homeopathy rather than mainly conventional disease management/treatment. Homeopathy is a safe, effective, affordable healthcare solution used by millions of people worldwide for more than 200 years to achieve health and wellness. Homeopathic medicines are recognized by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. 

·         Achieving health and well-being requires eliminating health disparities, achieving health equity, attaining health literacy, and providing access to a variety of healthcare options, including integrative therapies such as homeopathy. Homeopathy is low cost and well suited for use by all economic levels, therefore it is accessible to income-challenged people. It is being used for primary health care in resource-challenged countries such as India, Haiti, and Cuba and in Africa and South America as well as in clinics for underserved populations in the United States.

·        The Healthy People 2030 framework must include incentives and payment options for integrative health approaches, such as homeopathy, in order to make them accessible options for health care.

·         Integrative health treatment is a frequent choice for consumers and should be included in the 2030 health plan. Americans spend over $30 billion a year on alternative or complementary medicine treatment, including homeopathy - a substantial percentage of the $328 billion spent in total out-of-pocket health care expenditures and comparable to expenditures for conventional physician visits and prescription drug use. Users believe enough in the value of these approaches to pay for them out of pocket.

·        The Healthy People 2030 framework should include integrative approaches such as homeopathy as initial effective substitutes for high risk pharamcological treatement. Including homeopathy and other whole person, safe, integrative approaches will reduce the need for expensive remedial treatments for pharamacological side effects and addictions.