Homeopathy in Finland

Homeopathy in Finland

Homeopathy was first mentioned in Finland in 1888 by A. Pfaler in a history of Finnish healing practices.

In the year 1921 Eino Suolahti made a research on the "Quackery in Finland," and mentioned that homeopathy was practiced mainly in the Swedish-speaking west coast areas of Finland. In other parts of Finland there had only been a couple of touring homeopaths, undoubtedly because of the country's remoteness.

A meeting to form a society of homeopaths was held in 1984 by seven homeopaths who had been studying in Sweden. The society was formally registered in 1986. The number of members increased rapidly in 1991, when the first classical homeopaths graduated from the Kairon Institute in Helsinki.

In the following years there were an increasing number of homeopaths coming also from Homeopatia Institute, the Finnish School of Classical Homeopathy in Helsinki, and the school named "Luontaislääkinnän edistämiskeskus" (Centre promoting naturopathic medicine) near the city of Tampere.

In the beginning of the 1990s there were two homeopathic societies, Suomen Homeopaatitry, which became a member of ECCH and ICCH in 1991, and Suomen Klassiset Homeopaatitry which formed in 1990, mainly by students of the Finnish School of Classical Homeopathy. The two societies merged in 1994, with their main aim to promote classical homeopathy.

The homeopaths who have graduated from the Luontaislääkinnän edistämiskeskus are still connected to a society called Pohjoismainen Homeopaattiyhdistysry. (The Nordic homeopaths). They have about 50 members; some of them are also members of the Suomen Homeopaatit ry.

In 1998 Suomen Homeopaatitry had 400+ members, including students. There are about 160 homeopaths in the society who have been accepted on the list of regularly practicing homeopaths. The society has published a magazine Homeopatia since 1992.

All the homeopaths have had a basic course in school medicine, anatomy, physiology, pathology etc. for at least 200 hours, and some have also been "co-educated" in school medicine in a two-year course (600 hours). The medical course (600 hours) was organized by the homeopathic society and IV Helsinki Medical Shool.

Finnish legislation provides no official status for homeopathy. There is no category such as "registered" homeopaths, but the society is working on developing professional criteria that would lead to a register of homeopaths and a guarantee of high quality among those practicing.

Also there are some restrictions in Finnish legislation regarding pharmacy: every homeopathic remedy has to be individually registered, be it registered in any other EU country or not, and every import company has to register their remedies individually. The cost of one remedy to be registered is 1000 FMK (about 110 English Pounds). Furthermore, the registration process takes 210 days.