Welcome to the EHTPA
The EHTPA was founded in 1993 when it became clear that with the development of the European Union, the legislative framework under which herbal medicine was practised in the UK and Europe was likely to undergo radical change. The main professional herbal practitioner associations in the UK affiliated with Irish and Danish herbal associations to form the European Herbal & Traditional Medicine Practitioners Association (EHTPA).
The EHTPA is an umbrella body which represents professional associations of herbal/traditional medicine practitioners offering variously western herbal medicine, Chinese herbal medicine, Ayurveda and traditional Tibetan medicine. The EHTPA is dedicated to the development of herbal/traditional medicine, preserving and enhancing the legal basis of practice across EU Members States and promoting best practice throughout the traditions.
"Save Herbal medicine" - EHTPA Lobby outside Parliament on 24th April 2013
The EHTPA welcomes its new Senior Research Assistant January 2013
The EHTPA is delighted to announce its appointment of Dr Lara McClure as an EHTPA Senior Research Assistant - a post initially scheduled for three months. In this time Dr McClure will be reviewing herbal research across the herbal traditions and building a research network to bring those involved with research into herbal medicine into closer communication with a view to sharing skills and knowledge regarding herbal medicine research. If you wish to be involved please contact Dr McClure by email.
Dr McClure was appointed from a field of over thirty highly qualified applicants and has a background in CAM and herbal research. As Research Supervisor she currently teaches research on the Acupuncture and Chinese Herbal Medicine courses at the Northern College of Acupuncture where she is also the Librarian. Dr McClure has a BA from Cambridge University, an MA from the University of York and a PhD also awarded from the University of York.
Dr McClure's details are:
EHTPA Head Office
25 Lincoln Close
Signing up to train as a herbal/traditional medicine practitioner? Consider this (February 2011)....
The Government is about to give its decision on whether herbalists should be statutorily regulated. We expect to hear about this shortly.
Should the decision to statutorily regulate our sector be made, it is possible that the regulator (e.g. the Health Professions Council) will accept the members of some professional associations that have acceptable standards of training and accreditation for direct and immediate transfer over to the new statutory register when it opens.
The Department of Health Steering Group under its independent chair, Professor Mike Pittilo, published a snapshot of many courses on offer and their standing according to certain accreditation criteria in 2008. These are published on pages 169-171 together with a listing of courses and their processes according to the information received at the time of the Reportís publication (see pages 161- 167 of the Report). Click here to access DH Steering Group Report final proof.pdf (1MB). Those using the 1968 Medicines Act Section 12(1) herbal exemption in their practice (i.e. one-to-one prescription) who belong to professional associations that do not qualify for such direct transfer will still have the opportunity to apply to join the register during the grand-parenting period but it is likely that applications will be considered on an individual basis.
It is impossible for us to give specific guidance about particular training at this time but it would seem sensible to check and see if there is any independent accreditation of the course you plan to take; for example, as you will see some courses listed in the Report have both university and our own EHTPA independent accreditation. As you will also see, there are other accreditation boards listed aside from our own. Whichever they are, a properly constituted accreditation process should include clear training outcomes that deliver on a published curriculum. For example the EHTPA Common Core Curriculum is published on pages 124 onwards. This is the kind of thing you should look for to underpin any accreditation process and satisfy yourself as to the standard of the training you are thinking of applying for. The accreditation board should be properly constituted , set up at armís length from the training institution and ideally should include lay membership.
Lastly, you will see from the Common Core Curriculum that it is generally agreed that students should learn an appropriate amount of western medicine knowledge and skills as well as some pharmacology. As herbalists practise internal medicine and see patients without referral from GPs, it is incumbent on practitioners to know enough western medicine to be able to recognise the limits of their competence and know when to refer patients to doctors etc...
Herbal and traditional medicine practitioners get statutory regulation
On 16th February the Secretary of State for Heath, Andrew Lansley announced in a written statement to the UK Parliament that all UK practitioners prescribing herbal medicines are to be statutorily regulated via the Health Professions Council. The Health Secretary went on to explain that 'this would ensure that practitioners would meet specified registration standards' giving practitioners and consumers continuing access to unlicensed manufactured herbal medicines to meet individual patient needs after the introduction of new EU legislation after April 30th this year. Click here to read Andrew Lansley's statement.
The move to regulation has been under discussion for over a decade in the UK since the prestigious House of Lords' Select Committee on Science and Technology called for UK herbalists to be statutory regulated in its seminal report on Complementary Medicine in 2000. The following year, the Government agreed that this should go ahead and launched two committees under independent chairs, one to look at the regulation of herbalists and the other acupuncturists. The process was most generously supported by the Prince of Wales and his Foundation for Integrated medicine. The two committees published their reports in 2003 and the following year the Department of Health (DH) undertook a public consultation on the statutory regulation of herbal practitioners. The results of this consultation were published in 2005 and showed a 98% opinion in favour of statutory regulation (Department of Health 2005. The Statutory Regulation of Herbal Medicine and Acupuncture. Report on the Consultation. Stationery Office, London.) That same year the DH published a timetable for such statutory regulation. In the event, a General Election and a public outcry in the wake of murders by the rogue doctor Harold Shipman brought considerable delay. The newly elected Labour administration put the herbal regulation on hold whilst it commissioned an overview of the regulation of all healthcare workers from doctors to hospital porters. This process took many months to complete and in the meantime the Government decided that there should be another DH Committee under the chairmanship of Professor Michael Pittilo to advise Government how best to regulate herbal medicine, traditional Chinese medicine and acupuncture.
The Pittilo report, outlining specific measures to bring about this regulation, was published in 2008 and in 2009 the Government commissioned a second public consultation on this subject. Such consultations usually attract no more than about 40-60 responses; this one elicited an extraordinary public response with over six and half thousand replies. A decade after the House of Lords called for the statutory regulation of herbalists, the Government finally decided that statutory regulation of herbalists should go ahead and, once all the devolved administrations (Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland) had agreed to this, the announcement was made by Andrew Lansley on February 16th. Once again the public expressed its clear view that herbalists should be statutorily regulated. The results of the 2009 public consultation published concurrently with the Minister of Health's announcement showed there was a massive majority (85% of the responses) in favour of statutory regulation. Click on link shown on footnote.
Herbal medicine faces regulation
From The Press and Journal, published: 21/02/2011
North-east academic's efforts pay off as health secretary announces register of practitioners by Lindsay Watling
SUCCESS: Dr Carol Blow, widow of Professor Mike Pittilo, says herbal medicine regulation is a victory for patient safety. Raymond Besant
An Aberdeen academic's long-standing campaign for a law to regulate the herbal medicine Industry reached a major milestone this week - exactly a year to the day since he died.
Former principal and vice-chancellor of Robert Gordon University, Mike Pittilo, who died of cancer last February aged 55, was a staunch advocate of the need to regulate herbalists.
Professor Pittilo was heavily involved with the Prince of Wales Foundation for Integrated Health (FIH) and in 2003 chaired a Department of Health steering group which published a report recommending the urgent implementation of a system of regulation.
Last year he was made an MBE for this work, but the sector remained unregulated until Wednesday - the first anniversary of his death - when Health Secretary Andrew Lansley announced in parliament that the findings were accepted.
Mr Lansley told MPs that practitioners in all four UK nations should be statutorily regulated by the Health Professionals Council and said a register would be set up to ensure practitioners met specified standards.
He added: "I'm pleased to say this decision resolves a long-standing issue, to the benefit of practitioners and the public who use herbal medicines."
Prof Pittilo's widow Dr Carol Blow called the news a "real victory for patient safety". She said: "The most important thing was Mike's concern about patient safety. Herbal medicines are sometimes seen as being natural and safe, but they can be toxic and they do kill people.
"After all these years of debating it, it's really reassuring to know that there's going to be some formal regulation because at the moment, anybody can set themselves up as a practitioner and supply potentially toxic substances. Mike would be so satisfied the recommendations have been accepted."
That the announcement had coincided exactly with the anniversary of Prof Pittilo's death was "incredibly symbolic", she added.
RGU acting principal Professor John Harper said the news was "another illustration of Mike's continued influence" and said it "marked the successful culmination of a major exercise".