A homeopathic doctor who distributed a controversial treatment for Aids in Africa may keep his honour from the king, health minister Edith Schippers has told MPs.
Jan Scholten is under fire for promoting a substance he calls Iquilai as a cure for the disease but can only be stripped of his honour if sentenced to at least a year in jail, Schippers said.
Critics have accused Scholten of unethical behaviour for using homeopathic medicine on Africans with a deadly disease. He was made a knight in the order of Oranje-Nassau earlier this year.
‘It is unbelievable that this man was given an honour,’ aids expert Joep Lange told the Volkskrant. ‘Using it means patients either don’t start taking proper medicine at all or do so too late.’
Schippers did say she would inform the Kenyan authorities about the Aids Remedy Fund, partly set up by Scholten, which distributes Iquilai in Kenya. She has also asked the health inspectors to investigate.
Scholten denies stopping his patients from taking traditional medicines but claims they have made enormous strides when given his medicine. Aids, he says, is not a sickness but a symptom.
‘There is often a minority complex involved, the feeling of being bad,’ the Volkskrant quotes him as saying.
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