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Bulletin: July 2013

12th July 2013

Announcement from the Complementary & Natural Health Council – Unsolicited Email Circular

 

The GHR has been informed by some of its Registrants that they have received an email from another professional body headed ‘Become a Government Recognised Hypnotherapist’.

 

The Complementary and Natural Healthcare Council (CNHC), the voluntary regulator set up with Department of Health (DoH) funding, has put out a notice on this matter which states:

 

“It has been drawn to our attention that an email has been circulated to hypnotherapists from the National Hypnotherapy Society (Ed – previously, the Hypnotherapy Society), which encourages practitioners to join its register following its Professional Standards Authority (PSA) accreditation.

 

We have received a number of enquiries about this email and thought it might be helpful for you to see the key messages we are providing:

 

• There is no requirement for any practitioner to register with this other organisation.

 

• The accreditation process referred to in the email relates to accreditation of the governance of the organisation rather than the standards of the practitioners themselves – i.e. it is not accrediting the individual practitioners.

 

• CNHC continues to be the only organisation that was set up with government funding and support to be the UK voluntary regulator for complementary healthcare, including hypnotherapy.

 

• PSA accreditation of any organisation does not change this.

 

• CNHC is currently going through this accreditation process as well and we will update practitioners about it in due course.”

 

Explanatory notes on the above:

 

Under the recent Health & Social Care Bill, holders of voluntary registers have the opportunity of having their governance assessed by the PSA (an arm of the Health & Care Professions Council) and being awarded accredited voluntary register (AVR) status. The organisation circulating these emails recently decided to leave the CNHC and to pursue the status of AVR independently. The GHSC/GHR had been in attendance during a recent 12 months period at the relevant PSA meetings that debated the AVR process but has so far decided not to apply for the status for the main reason that the CNHC (in which the GHR is a Verifying Professional Association) is itself applying for the status of AVR and has almost completed this process.

 

As a consequence of the above, once the CNHC has secured this status, all GHR registrants at Practitioner level (and who are thereby already eligible for CNHC registration) would have simultaneous access to an AVR whilst also enjoying the additional benefit of inclusion within the DoH acknowledged CAM Voluntary Regulation programme.

 

Further points:

 

We feel it important to support the CNHC’s position as the DoH’s CAM voluntary regulator of choice rather than weakening it by acting unilaterally.

 

The award of ‘AVR’ is a component of voluntary self-regulation (VSR) but does not replace it. AVR is essentially a PSA ‘kitemark’ that a particular voluntary register is being administered according to certain standards. It is not, however, an accreditation of the individual practitioners on such a register.

 

The DoH already recommends that members of the public seeking complementary medical services (including Hypnotherapy) consult a CNHC registered practitioner.

 

Any Registrant who may be unclear about the respective statuses of AVR and VSR may contact the GHR for further advice in the matter.

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Re-assessment Exercise for GHSC Affiliated Training Schools

 

Following a decision by the CNHC to establish a list of Training Schools across the 15 disciplines currently within its voluntary regulation programme (including Hypnotherapy) whose courses comply with the respective required training standards, the GHSC took the opportunity to undertake a re-assessment of all of its practitioner level Affiliated Schools. This has been a time-consuming and difficult exercise (both for the GHSC/GHR and the participating Schools) but we are pleased to report that it has now been virtually completed. We have been gratified by the number of Schools that have complied with our requests for the relevant documentation and would like to thank them for their support of this initiative.

 

The Results:

 

Of the 151 Training Schools currently affiliated to the GHSC, 118 Schools were eligible for the re-assessment of one or more Practitioner Level courses. (N.B. The remainder have courses accredited at the lower Foundation Level only and were therefore not eligible for this exercise.)
Of the 94 Schools that responded, 79 Schools’ courses have been assessed as meeting the training requirements (with 12 of these having been required to address certain identified areas and to re-submit further documentation before being assessed as having met the requirements) and the remaining 15 Schools have each offered acceptable reasons why they need further time in which to comply.

 

We shall re-contact each of the non-respondents with a final opportunity to comply but failure to do so will necessarily result in removal of that School from affiliation.

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Advertising Standards Authority (ASA): Complementary Therapies – Tips and Guidance

 

Published by the ASA on 06 June 2013

 

In 2011 the Copy Advice team produced a range of guidance materials for complementary therapies, in response to a rise in complaints about advertising in this sector. We’ve looked back and highlighted some of the most common pitfalls and explain how you can use these materials to avoid them. For example, using testimonials or endorsements from customers can be a great way of promoting your business, but you can’t use endorsements that make claims that you wouldn’t be able to make yourself.

 

Don’t refer to serious medical conditions unless the therapy is conducted under the supervision of a suitably qualified health professional.

 

References to serious medical conditions are likely to breach rule 12.2 of the Code – Marketers must not discourage essential treatment for conditions for which medical supervision should be sought. You can find a list of such conditions at the end of this Help Note. Advertisers should not offer specific advice on, diagnosis of or treatment for such conditions unless that advice, diagnosis or treatment is conducted under the supervision of a suitably qualified health professional. For further advice on who is a suitably qualified health professional please read rule 12.2 of the Code.

 

Ensure that you have evidence for any medical or health claims.

 

All efficacy claims must be based on strong reputable evidence. If your health claim has not previously been established it is likely to be seen as a breakthrough claim. The ASA and its Committee of Advertising Practice (CAP) have more stringent evidence requirements for these types of claims and consequently sound data, relevant to the claim made, should be collated to form a body of evidence. This should normally include at least one experimental human study (ideally double-blind and placebo-controlled). The Guidance on Health Therapies & Evidence details other categories of evidence that might form part of a submission and gives specific guidance on the quality of data.

 

Don’t forget that claims in testimonials are subject to the same evidence requirements.

 

Claims in testimonials require the same level of evidence as any other claim. That means marketers may not use testimonials to circumvent the Code by making claims in a customer statement that they would not otherwise be permitted to make.

 

Check Advice Online to see our position on a wide range of therapies.

 

The CAP website has specific Advice Online entries for a number of therapies. Before creating your ad, check to see if your treatment has an entry, as it will give you a good idea of currently acceptable claims. (Ed – In this regard, Hypnotherapy may be accessed from https://www.cap.org.uk/Advice-Training-on-the-rules/Advice-Online-Database/Therapies-Hypnotherapy.aspx).

 

As always, please ring the ASA if you have any questions, or send your specific queries, to the CAP Copy Advice Team.

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Free Resources for Therapists

 

GHR practitioner and supervisor, Brian Watson, has notified us that he has set up a free resource facility for therapists at https://www.brianwatsonassociates.com/Free-Therapists-Resources.html

 

He will be posting videos, articles and various items all related to hypnotherapy on his website, together with hints, tips and interesting case histories etc.

 

Entry to the facility is password protected but practitioners can request a password via a form on the page.

We would be interested to receive feedback from Registrants on how useful they may have found this resource.

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‘Newsflash’ (just in) – from the British Acupuncture Council

 

“Be wary of TV programme invite.”

 

We have received this message from several members and directly ourselves. Whilst we cannot independently verify the content at the moment it is, as they say, better to be safe than sorry. It originates from the publisher of the publication ‘What the Doctors Don’t Tell You’, 5th July 2013.

 

“Special alert to alternative therapists.
If you are an alternative/complementary health therapist working in the UK, be warned. If you know any alternative therapists, please make sure they get this message: An independent TV production company is contacting alternative therapists to appear in a programme they are preparing.
In their pitch, they will tell you it is a great opportunity to showcase your skills and practice. It’s not; it’s a stitch-up. In fact, the programme’s title is ‘Health Freaks on Trial’, and you will be interrogated by a panel of four doctors who will belittle your work. Don’t be fooled: say no.
Please spread the word!”

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GHR Administration

 

Views expressed within GHR published material and any conclusions reached are those of the authors and not necessarily shared by other individuals, organisations or agencies
©General Hypnotherapy Register

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