To answer this question requires looking at how medicine is taught in medical schools, which has largely remained unchanged since the Flexner Report recommended drastic changes in 1910. Prior to the report, in North American there were 22 Homeopathic medical schools and 100 Homeopathic hospitals. Even “big name” medical schools taught courses in Homeopathy. The use of natural cures became a movement in Europe in the 19th century as doctors promoted natural diets, exercise, and avoiding tobacco and too much work. Starting in 1901, the American School of Naturopathy taught these concepts as well as herbal medicine, hydrotherapy, and avoiding alcohol and tea. Nearly two-dozen Naturopathic Medical Schools in North America joined its ranks. But all of that began to change after the American Medical Association asked the Rockefellers and Carnegies to fund the Flexner Report in an effort to standardize how medical schools operated, improve the quality of medical students, and promote the AMA’s reformist agenda. A number of changes were made following the report including an 80% decrease in the number of medical schools, curricula had to follow the scientific method, medical schools were now in charge of the teaching that occurred in hospitals instead of the hospitals, and funding was available for medical schools but only if they taught strictly allopathy, aka pharmaceutical-based treatments. The natural healing powers of herbs and the importance of diet on preventing and ameliorating disease were literally removed overnight, even though many drugs in production today have their discoveries “rooted” in herbs and plants. Now only 27% of US medical schools offer students 25 hours or more or nutrition training, according to a 2015 report in Academic Medicine, yet the list of pharmaceuticals medical students
are required to memorize grows each year.
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