As always in times of crisis people turn on each other and are quick to suggest the next one to be thrown out of the bus.
This seems to be the case in the world of medicine, as the recession forces cutbacks scientists have decided to take a punch at alternative medicines.
The National Institute of Health (NIH) has about twenty five institutes throughout America that carry out research into complementary medicine.
The budget is 300 million dollars annually, of an overall figure of nearly 30 billion. It is the National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine (NCCAM) that a group of professionals are hoping to shut down.
Stephen Salzberg is one of the individuals keen to see the new Obama administration close down funding in what he regards as pseudoscience. Taking the latest US president’s stated goal of making science the key to all health research carried out, to the letter.
Salzberg and others believe that any research performed by the NCCAM is just marketing fodder for the various medicines and although the budget is tiny, it is money that could be used elsewhere. Basically, critics say that the NCCAM does not deserve to be a part of the NIH.
A team, set up by Barack Obama after taking office, has been requesting ideas on an electronic notice board, and this is where Salzberg and his supporters put forward their radical proposal.
Since its foundation over a decade ago, NCCAM has slowly grown and it supports a myriad of acupuncture treatments and homeopathy and other unconventional approaches to medicine.