The Charity Commission began a consultation on 13 March 2017 on
how it should approach registering organisations that promote
complementary and alternative medicines ('CAMs'). The
consultation is part of a review of how the Charity Commission
decides whether organisations that use or promote CAMs are
The Commission emphasised that it neither supports nor opposes
CAMs and that the registration of a CAMs organisation does not
equate to an endorsement of the therapies. Rather, registration of
a charity requires a legal test in which the Commission considers a
range of factors, including whether an organisation's purposes
benefit the public and whether any potential harm may outweigh
The Commission explained that it must rely on evidence to be
certain that there is a public benefit, and the consultation will
focus on the nature of the evidence it should require of
organisations pursuing or promoting CAMs that apply to register as
charities. For instance, the regulator has asked how it should
consider conflicting or inconsistent evidence as to whether a
certain therapy is effective. The Commission will also consider
whether a distinction should be made between organisations
promoting complementary versus alternative therapies.
The consultation document is available here and runs until 20 May 2017.
The content of this article is intended to provide a general
guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought
about your specific circumstances.
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