Monday, 29 March 2010
*National Hypnotherapy Coucil - better spellers than me
The National Hypnotherapy Council claim that "Hypnotherapy is an effective treatment for many conditions that is proven to work by an overwhelming amount of research."
UPDATE, 4th Aug: ASA write to confirm the advertisers have agreed not to repeat their advert.
From what I understand of the available evidence, this claim seems difficult to support.
A standard ASA complaint follows - but I hope that no-one there reads it, since I managed half a dozen gratuitious misspellings of the word "hypnotherapy".
"I write to complain about an advert in “Natural Health" Magazine (April 2010, page 22), which promotes the National Council for Hypnotherapy.
I suspect that the advert may be in breach of two sections of the British Code of Advertising, Sales Promotion and Direct Marketing (CAP) code.
I have submitted a scan of the advert. I can provide an original copy of the advert by post, if required.
1. The CAP Code, Section 3.1, states "Before distributing or submitting a marketing communication for publication, marketers must hold documentary evidence to prove all claims, whether direct or implied, that are capable of objective substantiation."
2. The CAP Code, Section 50.1, states "Medical and scientific claims made about beauty and health-related products should be backed by evidence, where appropriate consisting of trials conducted on people..."
3. I challenge whether the advertiser holds documentary evidence to prove any of the following claims, and I challenge whether the claims are backed by evidence, where appropriate consisting of clinical trials conducted on people:
(i) Hypnotherapy is able to help with irritable bowel syndrome
(ii) Hypnotherapy is able to help with weight control
(iii) Hypnotherapy is able to help with smoking cessation
(iv) Hypnotherapy is able to help with panic attacks
(v) Hypnotherapy is able to help with skin problems
4. I challenge whether the statement "Hypnotherapy is an effective treatment that is proven to work by an overwhelming amount of research" can be substantiated.
5. I confirm that I have no connections with the advertiser, with the magazine, or with the publishing and alternative medicine industries in general. I confirm that I am not involved in legal proceedings with the advertiser or the magazine.
6. I confirm that I am happy to be identified as the complainant."