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Abha Light – DC's Improbable Science

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Abha Light

Malaria in the news, yet again.

Today I had a not-very-friendly letter from Kate Birch

From: kate birch <katebhom@hotmail.com>

To: david colquhoun <d.colquhoun@ucl.ac.uk>

Subject: FW: Abha Light Products: Announcing NEW MalariX InfoSheet

As I said we keep on working. while you and your kangaroo committee put on a good show. Try to take this one to the cleaners and more and more people will begin to see the fools that you really are. I hope western medicine saved you for your health crisis but that maybe when you depart you will see the how your bitterness twisted things and made you suffer so.

You may recall the expose in which homeopaths in the UK were caught, in 2006, recommending their sugar pills for prevention of malaria, Lethal advice from homeopaths about malaria prevention

You may remember the saga of the taking down of Andy Lewis’s classic post in 2007 on The Gentle Art of Homeopathic Killing

Despite all this, in 2008, the trendy Covent Garden company, Neal’s Yard, tried marketing a homeopathic malaria "remedy". The quackometer’s post Neal’s Yard Remedies Offers Lethal Homeopathic Malaria Advice is a corker. Under pressure they withdrew the “remedy” (see Neal’s Yard Ethical Bullshit Remedy . Eventually Neal’s Yard was censured by the MHRA ( Neal’s Yard Remedies ‘rapped by medicines regulator’ )

Then there was Kate Birch of the North American Society of Homeopaths, who advocates sugar pills for every disease under the sun (and follow-up to these claims).   Memorably, she visited me in late 2007 and gave me a copy of her book. A visit from Kate Birch sitll comes top of the front page if you google ‘kate birch homeopath’.

Attached to the unfriendly letter was a web page from Abha Light. It is an advertisement for a homeopathic malaria treatment. As far as I can see, it doesn’t say anywhere what the “remedy” contains, but that doesn’t matter if, as in most homeopathic products, it contains nothing whatsoever.

malarix1

This document contains a direct claim that the treatment "has been successfully been used to prevent and treat malaria . . ."

malarix2 

There follows more utter fantasy

malarix3

Nonsense like this would be a joke if it were not for the fact that they must be killing people. 

Peter Fisher, clinical director the Royal London Homeopathic Hospital, said, of the original malaria scandal,

“I’m very angry about it because people are going to get malaria – there is absolutely no reason to think that homeopathy works to prevent malaria and you won’t find that in any textbook or journal of homeopathy so people will get malaria, people may even die of malaria if they follow this advice”

Like most quasi-religious subjects, homeopathy is split into sects, at war with each other.

Follow-up