PETALING JAYA: Doctors must be allowed to prescribe health supplements as there are patients who need them for a healthier lifestyle and to maintain their health.
Malaysian Dietary Supplements Association (Madsa) pro tem president Jagdev Singh said the association strongly rejected the contention that doctors should not be allowed to sell health supplements.
“There are various health supplements that doctors currently use to treat patients.
Urging the Malaysian Medical Association (MMA) to allow doctors to prescribe or sell health supplements for the benefit of their patients, he pointed out: “It is not true that there is not enough evidence to show that these supplements work.”
Jagdev Singh was commenting on a report that the MMA suspected that some doctors were selling health supplements to their patients.
MMA president Dr N. Arumugam said the association had banned doctors from directly selling health supplements to patients since last April and called on the public to report such cases, including attempts by doctors to recruit patients as agents to sell the supplements.
Jagdev Singh said there were supplements which had now become mainstream medicine like the Omega 3 fish oil for the prevention of heart disease.
“The American Heart Association has endorsed the use of this supplement in a scientific statement published in the medical journal Circulation,” he said he said in a statement.
He noted that there were more than 5,000 clinical reports to support its use.
“Even the prestigious New England Journal of Medicine, in a published article dated April 9, 1998, supports the use of health supplements.
However, he said Madsa would not condone direct-selling companies which made use of doctors to sell health supplements for profit.
“Similarly, Madsa will agree with the MMA to report doctors who recruit agents to sell for them for upline personal profit.”
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