A Victoria naturopath who garnered international attention for treating a child with a homeopathic solution made from rabid dog saliva has renounced her licence to practise.
Anke Zimmermann treated a boy with behavioural problems with a product called Lyssinum, also known as lyssin or hydrophobinum, which is made by diluting the saliva of a rabid dog in water.
Lyssinum is produced by a company called Helios, which did not have approval from Health Canada because they never applied for Drug Identification Number, a fact that Zimmerman claims on her blog that she did not know.
In a statement put forward by the College of Naturopathic Physicians of BC, an Inquiry Committee conducted an investigation into the case, which led to a “collegial discussion” where Zimmerman gave up her license.
“The Registrant understood the College’s standards of practice and that her approach to practice does not align with the College’s regulation of the profession in that area,” the College said in a public notification. “As such, the Registrant has voluntarily surrendered her license and she intends on continuing as a homeopath.”
Zimmermann has been vocal about the public response to her use of Lyssinum, and will not be able to reapply for her licence for a minimum of five years.
“The usual accusation is that homeopathic remedies can’t possibly work because they are so diluted. They are just water, a placebo. But now the claim suddenly is that they are somehow deadly or injurious, because the remedy in this case was made from rabid dog saliva,” Zimmermann said in a public post.
“I have news for you folks, homeopathy either works or it doesn’t. If it doesn’t, what does it matter what it’s made of, dog saliva, elephant’s dung or badger’s pubic hair, it’s so diluted that it’s only water after all, or a placebo, a sugar pill.”
Zimmermann claims the use of the treatment cured a four-year old boy of aggressive behaviour and sleep problems.
While there is one accredited college of homeopathic medicine in Ontario, there is no national board for homeopathy in Canada.
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