Last week Emma Grant and her mother Anne Hagan traveled to the nation’s capital to voice their support for homeopathic medicine. The duo, who are volunteers for Americans for Homeopathy Choice, a nationwide grassroots homeopathy advocacy organization, attended Homeopathy on the Hill and met with several legislators.
Homeopathy, also known as homeopathic medicine, is a medical system that was developed in Germany more than 200 years ago. According to the National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health, homeopathy is based on two unconventional theories — the notion that a disease can be cured by a substance that produces similar symptoms in healthy people and the notion that the lower the dose of the medication, the greater its effectiveness.
According to their website, Americans for Homeopathy Choice is a non-partisan national nonprofit formed to support the rights of the six million Americans who use homeopathy.
Grant and Hagan met with Sen. Mitch McConnell’s health legislative assistants, Sen. Rand Paul’s legislative correspondent and the U.S. Representative for Kentucky’s 2nd congressional district, Brett Guthrie.
Grant said all of their meetings were positive and the legislators seemed interested in what they had to say.
“Our goal was to educate them,” she said. “Because if you don’t know what you are fighting for, you won’t fight very hard for it. Nothing is more important to me than the health of my three young kids, so protecting our family’s choice to use homeopathy is a top priority for me.”
The pair also invited members of Congress to a luncheon briefing to further discuss homeopathy.
“We decided to attend the event because we are passionate about homeopathy and have seen first-hand how useful it is for our family for so many things, including colds, pain relief, stress, insomnia, nausea, migraines, allergic reactions, labor and delivery and more,” Grant said.
Homeopathy has been governed under the Food, Drug and Cosmetic Act since 1938 and is labeled as a distinct form of medicine. However, under the current policy, the FDA does not evaluate the drugs for safety or effectiveness.
In December 2017, the FDA proposed a new risk-based enforcement approach to homeopathic drug products that have the greatest potential to cause risk to patients. This makes homeopathic medicines less available, and things uncertain for Americans who rely on these medicines.
Currently, nearly 1.5 million Kentuckians use some sort of complementary medicine.
Grant said she and her mother saw a need for Kentucky representatives at these events and decided to make the trek.
“We leaned on our family and friends to help from home by calling or emailing our representatives,” Grant said. “This made the decision to enter the political arena much easier as we knew we had family and friends who were supporting us fully.”
Grant said her mother was who introduced her to homeopathy after looking for a way to address her allergies because she had adverse reactions to over the counter medications.
“It’s been a little over four years since I started using homeopathic medicines instead of conventional medicine,” Grant said. “I could go on and on about homeopathic medicine and I would never want to be without the option to use it.”