Homoeopathy (Homoios = similar; pathos = suffering/disease) is a branch of medical science based on the principle "Similia Similibus Curenter" means "like cures like," i.e., substances that cause certain symptoms in a healthy person can also cure those same symptoms in someone who is ill. It was founded by a German physician Dr C. F. Samuel Hahnemann in 18th century who is considered as Father of Homoeopathy. Homoeopathy is best recommended for chronic diseases such as allergies, asthma, skin diseases like urticaria, psoriasis, eczema, chronic gastritis, sinusitis, migraine, herpes etc.
Homoeopathic medicine is built upon several basic principles. The first law says that individual can fight the symptoms by re-creating those very symptoms that the disease is manifesting, i.e. "likes are cured by likes". The second law shows that the substance that provokes the imitation of the symptoms needs to be extra diluted to work well; high doses would provoke ugly aggravations of the symptoms which could prove fatal. The third law of homeopathy says that the quantity of the medicine should be very small as this is actually used only to boost the immune system of the body to fight against the disease.
Homeopathy pays emphasis on strengthening the immune system and curing like with like. Homeopathy today has gained wide acceptability, both in India and abroad, because of its holistic and intrinsic values, the low cost of medication coupled with ease of administration and absence of more side effects.
Nature of Work
Homoeopaths approach their patients in a holistic way, means the whole of the body and spirit is dealt with, not just the particular disease. It is a safe, effective and gentle approach to health and provides an alternative to drugs and surgery.
Homeopathy differs from Allopathy in diagnostic and treatment procedures.
Homeopaths generally begin with detailed examinations of their patients' history, including questions regarding their physical, mental and emotional states, their life circumstances, food habits and any physical/emotional illness. The homeopath then attempts to translate this information into a complex formula of mental and physical symptoms including likes, dislikes, innate predispositions and body types. The goal is to develop a comprehensive representation of each individual's overall health. This information is compared with similar lists in the drug provings found in the homeopathic materia medica. After understanding the patient's temperament, personality, life style & all the symptoms, the homeopath tries to find the one drug most closely matching the "symptom totality" of the patient. The medication is in minute quantities, mild as compared to the allopathic medicine. Investigation and treatment does not involve any invasive procedures. The treatment gives great importance to increase the body's immune system while removing the genesis of the illness. Homoeopaths believe minute doses of natural mineral and plant substances can cure the patient by stimulating the natural defence mechanism. The remedy chosen mimics the action of the disease to stimulate the body's immune system. This is a highly personalised form of treatment, so patients who apparently suffer from the same illness may be prescribed different medicines.
A homoeopathic doctor needs to:
- have a strong belief in, and commitment to homoeopathy.
- an interest in alternative and complementary approaches to health.
- knowledgeable about disease processes and homoeopathic remedies.
- responsive to patient's personal issues and problems.
- be good listener, cool & calm, skilled at explaining complex issues in a simple manner.
- be able to inspire trust, and form a rapport with all kinds of people.
- analytical, confident, enthusiastic and energetic to promote and build a practice.
Eligibility: Students desirous of BHMS (Bachelor of Homoeopathic Medicine & Surgery) should have Higher Secondary or equivalent qualification (10 + 2) with English, Physics, Chemistry and Biology as well as attained the age of 17 years on or before 31st December of the year of his admission to the first year of the course.
Basically there are two types of courses available in Homeopathy namely Diploma in Homoeopathic Medicine & Surgery (DHMS) of 4 years duration, including 1-year of Internship and Bachelor of Homoeopathic Medicine & Surgery (BHMS) of 4 � Years + 1 year Internship. The Central Council of Homoeopathy, a statutory body under Government of India, is the apex body taking care of education, training and other matters related with Homoeopathy. All the courses must be recognised by Homoeopathy Central Council Act 1973. At present there are around 200 institutions in the country offering degree and diploma courses in Homoeopathy, which meet the regulations prescribed by the Council. Annual intake by these institutions is around 8000. The training period for Homoeopathic Studies varies with the course undertaken.
National Institute of Homoeopathy, Calcutta, an autonomous organization under the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare is a model academic institute of Homoeopathy in India. The Entrance Examination for BHMS course is usually held in June/July every year. Post Graduate Education in Homoeopathy was introduced in 1989 and M.D. (Hom.) is offered in seven different subjects namely Materia Medica, Organon of Medicine with Homoeopathic Philosophy, Repertory, Pediatrics, Medicine, Psychiatry and Pharmacy. About 15 institutions have been permitted by the Central Council, India to start Post Graduate Course in Homoeopathy. Vinayaka Missions University, Salem offers three-year MD (Doctor of Medicine in Homoeopathy) with specialization in Practice of Medicine, Paediatrics, Psychiatry, Homoeopathic Materia Medica, Organon of Medicine and Homoeopathic Philosophy, Repertory and Homoeopathic Pharmacy. Government Homoeopathic Medical College at Thiruvananthapuram and Kozhikode offer M.D. (Hom) in Materia Medica, Homoeopathic Philosophy, Repertory, Practice of Medicine and Pharmacy. The eligibility criterion for M.D. is BHMS degree or its equivalent as declared by the Central Council of Homoeopathy.
Selection of Institute and courses
The selection of the institute is important otherwise it would be wastage of precious time and money. Before selecting any institute, one should consider the following points e.g. reputation of the institute, recognition of institute, how old the institute is, efficiency of faculty members of the institute, infrastructure of the institute etc. All the courses & institutes must be recognized by Central Council of Homoeopathy (http://www.cchindia.com), India for secure future. One should go for higher studies like M.D. (Hom) for better employment opportunity especially in teaching field.
Colleges, Institutions and Universities
Here is the list of Institutions providing Homoeopathy courses in India:
- Ahmedabad Homoeopathic Medical College, Ghuma-Bhopal Road, Ghuma, Ahmedabad.
- Ahmednagar Homoeopathic Medical College, Savedi Road, Ahmednagar-414 003.
- Al-Amaan Homoeopathic Medical College, Chandpur Colony, Post Box No.54, Bijapur.
- Anand Homoeopathic Medical College and Research Institute,Near Sardar Baug, Bhalej Road, Anand-383 301. Dist. Kheda, Gujarat.
- Assam Govt. Homoeopathic Medical College and Hospital, P.O. Haibergaon, Dist. Nagaon-782 002. Assam
- Bakson Homoeopathic Medical College & Hospital, 36-B, Knowledge Park, Phase-I, Greater Noida (U.P.) - 201306
- Baroda Homoeopathic Medical College, Sailja Complex, Near R.C. Patel Estate, Akota Road, Vadodara-20.
- Bengal Homoeopathic Medical College and Hospital, Ismile, P.O. Asansol-713 301, Dist. Burdwan.
- Bharti Vidyapeeth's Homoeopathic Medical College, Dhankawadi, Katraj, Pune-411043.
- Cuttack Homoeopathic Medical College, Naya Bazar Cuttack.
- D.N.De. Homoeopathic Medical College and Hospital, 12, G.K. Road, Kolkata -700 046.
- Dhanvantari Homoeopathic Medical College and Hospital & Research Centre, Dhanvantari Campus, Kamatwade, CIDCO, Nashik-8.
- District Homoeopathic Medical College and Hospital, 478, Katju Nagar, Ratlam, MP
- Dr. Madan Pratap Khuteta Rajasthan Homoeopathic Medical College, Station road, Vanasthali Marg, Jaipur-302006
- Dr.B.R.Sur Homoeopathic Medical College and Hospital, Near Nanakpura Gurudwara (Ring Road), Moti Bagh-II, New Delhi-110 021.
- Dr.D.Y.Patil Homoeopathic Medical College, Pimpri, Dist.Pune.
- Fr.Muller's Homoeopathic Medical College, Kankanady, Mangalore-575 002
- Govt. Homoeopathic Medical College and Hospital, 191, Zone-I,M.P. Nagar, Bhopal-462 001.
- Govt. Homoeopathic Medical College, Ravindra Nagar Post, Cuddapah-516 003. A.P.
- Govt. Homoeopathic Medical College, Irnamuttam, P.O. Manacaud, Thiruvananthapuram
- Govt.Homoeopathic Medical College, No. 1178, 22 'B' Cross, Magadi Main Road, Bangalore-560 040.
- Govt.Homoeopathic Medical College, Karaparamba, Calicut, (Kozhikode)
- Gujarat Homoeopathic Medical College, At & P.O. Savli-391 770, Dist. Vadodara.
- Hahnemann Homoeopathic Medical College, Shoukat Mahal, Adjacent Iqbal Maidan, Bhopal
- Homoeopathic Medical College and Hospital, Hahnemann Hill, Gunjalwadi, Sangamner, Pune Highway, Sangamner Distt. Ahmednagar-422 605.
- Homoeopathic Medical College and Hospital, M-671, Sector 26, U.T. Chandigarh.
- Homoeopathic Medical College and Hospital, P.O.Mihijam, Distt.Dhumka-815 354 Jharkhand
- Homoeopathic Medical College and Hospital, Medical College Campus, Gulbarga-585 105.
- Homoeopathic Medical College, Akot Road, Akola-444001.
- Homoeopathic Medical College, 13, Budhawar Peth, Jain Boarding Campus, Balives, Solapur-413 02.
- Konkan Education & Medical Trust's Virar Homoeopathic Medical College, Veer Savarkar Marg, Virar, Tal.Vasai, Dist. Thane-401 303.
- Lingyat Education Association's Homoeopathic Medical College & Hospital, Near Durgadevi Temple, Dharwad-580 008.
- Nagpur College of Homoeopathic and Biochemistry, 543, Azamshah Layout, Great Nag Road, Nagpur-440 009.
- National Institute of Homoeopathy, Block-GE, Sector III, Salt Lake, Calcutta- 700 091.
- Nehru Homoeopathic Medical College and Hospital, B-Block, Defence Colony, New Delhi-24.
- Patna Homoeopathic Medical College and Hospital, Ram Krishan Nagar, (Sorangpur), Patna.
- Pt. Jawaharlal Nehru State Homoeopathic Medical College and Hospital, Block A/1, Scheme-38, Lakhanpur, Kalyanpur, Kanpur.
- Pt. Ravishankar Shukla Memorial Homoeopathic Medical College, 24, Navin Indore, Feroze Gandhi Press Complex, Agra-Mumbai Marg, Indore-452 008.
- Raipur Homoeopathic Medical College and Hospital, Ram Kund, Chaube Colony, Raipur-492 001.
- Rajiv Gandhi Homoeopathic Medical College, 9, Ashok Nagar Bhanwar Kuan, Main Road, Indore.
- Rajiv Gandhi University of Health Sciences, Bangalore. 42. Rajkot Homoeopathic medical College, Jainath Petrol Pump, Gondal Road, Rajkot.
- Shree Mahalaxmi Mahila Homoeopathic Medical College, (Shree Shamlaji Arogya Seva Trust), Kalyan Nagar, Opp. Mental Hospital, Karelibaug, Vadodara-390 018
- Shri Bhagwan Homoeopathic Medical College and Indira Gandhi Memorial Hospital, CIDCO N-6, Aurangabad-431 003.
- Shri Chamundamata Medical and Educational Mahila Mandal's Homoeopathic Medical College, Kamdari, Tal. Bhusawal, Distt. Jalgaon, Maharashtra-425 201.
- Shri Gujarati Samaj Homoeopathic Medical College, Educational Complex Sch.No.54, A.B. Road, Indore- 452 010
- Solan Homoeopathic Medical College & Hospital, Barog Bye-Pass, Kumarhatti, Solan- 173229
- Sri Gurunanak Dev Homoeopathic Medical College, Canal Road, Barewal, Near Punjab Agricultural University. Via Ayalikalan, Ludhiana-142 027.
- State Dr. Brij Kishore Homoeopathic Medical College and Hospital, Deokali, Faizabad.
- State National Homoeopathic Medical College and Hospital, 1, Viraj Khand, Gomati Nagar, Lucknow 226 001.
- Swahid Jadav Nath Govt. Homoeopathic Medical College, Vill. Bagharbari, P.O. Khanapara, Guwahati-781002
- Swami Vivekanand Homoeopathic Medical College, (Smt. V.T.Kovadiya & Smt. D.R.Kakari Charitable Trust) Old Kumar Shala, Dairy Road, Neelam Baug, Bhavnagar-364 002.
- Vasundhra Raje Homoeopathic Medical College and Hospital, Mahadji Nagar, Shivpuri, Link Road, Gwalior-474001.
- Vinayaka Missions University, NH-47,Sankari Main Road,Ariyanoor, Salem-636 308 , Tamil Nadu. www.vinayakamission.com
- White Memorial Educational Society, Attoor, Veeyanoor P.O, Kanyakumari Dist, Tamil Nadu- 629177
- Yuvraj Pratap Singh Memorial Homoeopathic Medical College, Shivaji Park, Alwar. Rajasthan.
Alternative medicine is becoming popular in society slowly. Homeopathic doctors too are in high demand especially for diseases that allopathic medicine can't cure in satisfactory ways. It is a very flexible career option as it can be started later in life and one can continue until older age. Homeopaths can work part time only or build up a busy practice and develop into a full time occupation with earnings increasing with the growth of the practice. Success depends on confidence, competence and ability to attract patients. Advancement is mainly through building up a practice. With experience, homoeopaths may move onto running seminars,tutorials, teaching at colleges/universities or supervising students and other practitioners and writing articles, books and health journals. They may get involved in homoeopathic research, or advise manufacturers on the production of homoeopathic medicines.
Although the pay scale in the private sector is not organized yet a homoeopathic doctor can start his career with approximately Rs. 10,000 per month. With decent personal set-up and experience one can earn between Rs. 20,000 to 50,000 per month. However there is no limitation once the doctor becomes famous in the society.
After completion of study & training in Homoeopathy a candidate can find job in Homoeopathic Hospitals and medical colleges, Govt. Dispensaries, Non-Government Organization (NGO). Besides private practice Homoeopathy offers career opportunities in research institutes (disease and drug related clinical research) in both government and private sectors. Homoeopathy graduates may work as a medical officer, administrator & manager, teacher, researcher as well as social reformer. So, the scope of Homoeopathy is ample & growing fast with the aspirations of coming era especially in the field of non-curable diseases and disorders.
Dr. G Shankar