Integrative Health Policy Consortium Caucus Attendees
In early March, the Integrative Health Policy Consortium (IHPC) asked for the CHC community’s help in encouraging Congressional representatives to attend the Integrative Health and Wellness Caucus on Capitol Hill. Many of you worked hard to ensure that your state’s representative and/or staffers stopped by the event. The IHPC reports success about its goal to educate members of Congress and their staff on the field of integrative pain management. IHPC also shares Boiron USA’s summary of the event as follows:
As you know, it’s after you try a homeopathic medicine that you truly understand the benefits of this therapeutic system. The IHPC made great inroads in introducing homeopathy to our nation’s elite lawmakers on Capitol Hill. A Boiron rep was on the scene with 100 full-sized tubes of Arnicare™Gel and the effort showed there’s a lot of education that needs to be done.
When asked if they had ever heard of “homeopathy” or knew what the term meant, a few [staffers] had a vague idea that it was a catch-all synonym to “natural” or “holistic”. While that was no surprise, it was surprising that not one person asked about the product’s safety record, clinical studies, or how it is regulated. Director of Corporate Communications and Public Affairs Alissa Gould states,
“You want to educate them about the benefits, but it’s human nature that they want to pay more attention to what appeals to them personally...”
For example, three young men from a NJ representative’s office declined to take the sample but were eventually excited to try the pain relief gel after sniffing its lack of traditionally strong menthol odor. And young staffers from the AL and VA offices were excited when Gould offered to mail their grandparents a sample.
Gould challenges the homeopathic community to find or create more valuable sampling opportunities. All it takes is one person to tell 10 more, like a staffer for a TX representative who said to the others at the display. “This stuff got me through power lifting. I’m a big fan. I think it was my mom who told me about it.”
In response to Alissa Gould’s comments, Nancy Gahles, CCH, IHPC representative, says, “Her words tell all: EDUCATION! While we view the challenges to homeopathy from a small lens, the larger world does not even know what it is. This is good news. We don’t have a huge challenge to overcome. We simply need to get out into our community and spread the good news. More health fairs, school/PTA events, presentations, open houses at your offices, and articles in the local paper. Local, community work is essential to educate...one person at a time!”
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