Charities: Complementary Medicine

Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport written question – answered on 18th December 2018.

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Photo of Steve Reed Steve Reed Shadow Minister (Digital, Culture, Media and Sport) (Civil Society)

To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, how many charities who promote the use of complementary and alternative medicine have been investigated by the Charity Commission in (a) 2016, (b) 2017 and (c) 2018.

Photo of Mims Davies Mims Davies Assistant Whip (HM Treasury), The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport

The Charity Commission for England and Wales publishes annual transparency data, which includes analyses of its statutory inquiry, compliance and monitoring casework according to the information on the register of charities and submitted by charities in their annual returns.

This includes a breakdown of casework statistics by classification, beneficiary group, income, and the charities’ age (years since registration) and can be seen here: https://www.gov.uk/government/collections/analysis-of-charities-subject-to-an-inquiry-or-compliance-case#inquiry-case-statistics:-2017-18.

The Charity Commission does not provide case statistics specifically on charities who promote the use of complementary and alternative medicine. The breakdown includes charities classified as being for ‘advancement of health / saving lives’, but the Commission does not disaggregate this classification any further, and some charities may use or promote CAM therapies as one part of a much wider range of activities.

The Charity Commission has updated its approach to assessing the charitable status of organisations that promote complementary and alternative medicine (CAM) therapies. That approach is reflected in revised internal guidance and a report setting out the outcome of its review, was published last week, and can be seen here: https://www.gov.uk/government/news/updated-approach-to-assessing-applications-from-organisations-promoting-complementary-and-alternative-therapies .

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