Belgium

                                                                                                                                                   Update : 31 March 2021

Policy

Complementary / alternative medicine is not taught in Belgian medical schools; however, the Belgian Medical Faculty of Homeopathy offers courses for allopathic physicians, surgeons, dentists, pharmacists, and veterinarians. These courses comply with standards set by the European Committee for Homeopathy.

The European pharmacopoeia serves as the national pharmacopoeia, and is considered to be legally binding. No national monographs exist.

Regulatory requirements for manufacturing of herbal medicines include adherence to the information in pharmacopoeias and monographs and the same GMP rules as for conventional pharmaceutical. Compliance with these requirements is ensured through inspections of the manufacturing and packaging sites. Safety requirements are the same as for conventional pharmaceuticals, and are ensured through the pharmacovigilance centre and general pharmacy inspections.

Belgium is also one of EU and OECD member countries, and follows the simplified regulatory approval process on Traditional herbal medicinal products under the EU Directive on Traditional Herbal Medicinal Products (THMPD) formally known as The Directive 2004/24/EC.

Contact 

Belgium Ministry of Health
Federal Public Service (FPS) Health, Food Chain Safety and Environment
Avenue Galilée / Galileelaan, 5 box 2
1210 Brussels
Tel.: +32 (0) 2 524.97.97
Website: https://www.health.belgium.be/

 

Laws and Regulations

The practice of health care professionals in Belgium is regulated by the practice of healthcare professions act, the Royal Decree No. 78 of 10 November 1967. The act includes physicians, dentists, physiotherapists, pharmacists, nurses, midwives and paramedical practitioners. [1] According to Article 2 of this act, making a diagnosis and establishing the treatment of a physical or mental disorder are reserved for the holders of a medical diploma approved by the competent medical commission [2]. Consequently only physicians, dentists or midwives are entitled to make a diagnosis and to prescribe treatment, and only these professions may practise Complementary and Alternative Medicine (CAM) treatments [1].

Doctors can recommend CAM to their patients (or practise CAM themselves), and a number of CAM treatments may be dispensed legally by physiotherapists on medical prescription (41).

There is a proposal to put in place The Colla act 1999 to govern the registration and practise of CAM practitioners who are not also conventional physicians. However, this act has not been properly excecuted and is not fully in effect as the joint commision to advise this act is still not established. Therefore,  the practice of a CAM by a non-doctor is still illegal. [2]

 

Contact 

Belgium Ministry of Health
Federal Public Service (FPS) Health, Food Chain Safety and Environment
Avenue Galilée / Galileelaan, 5 box 2
1210 Brussels
Tel.: +32 (0) 2 524.97.97
Website: https://www.health.belgium.be/

 

References:

1. International Encyclopaedia of Laws. Medical Law - Suppleement 44 Belgium. Vol. I-IV. Belgium: Kluwer Law International. 2005; p. 87.

2. Acupuncture: State of affairs in Belgium. Synthesis. Belgian Health Care Knowledge Centre (KCE). KCE Reports 153C. 2011; p. 15.

3. Homeopathic and anthroposophic medicinal products in the EU - Profile of an industry. Washington: 2015; p. 15.