Complementary therapies can lead to a 37% reduction in doctors’ visits and reduce stress and anxiety by 54%, however, they are often overlooked as legitimate treatment.
To tackle this stigma, the All-Party Parliamentary Group on Beauty and Wellbeing has made recommendations to the Government which will raise the reputation of the industry, reduce mental health issues, and up-skill the population
On February 2nd, the All Party Parliamentary Group on Beauty and Wellbeing, chaired by Carolyn Harris MP and Judith Cummins MP, published recommendations for the government following its inquiry into the value of complementary therapies in supporting the nation’s health.
The report sets out the benefits of therapies including massage, reflexology, and reiki for supporting everyone’s physical health and mental wellbeing. It encourages medical professionals to learn more about complementary treatments for the referral of patients via social prescribing.
Split into three key areas, the findings cover the value of complementary therapies for mental health, closing the skills gap, and promoting the professionalism of the sector. From this, the APPG made key recommendations for the Government including:
- To work with NHS England to promote the benefits of social prescribing complementary therapy services
- Provide greater financial incentives for employers to take on apprentices and learners to address the skills shortage
- Give Environmental Health Officers greater powers to act quickly to deal with poor practice
Launched in the summer of 2022, the inquiry gathered oral and written evidence, both of which the British Beauty Council took part in. Helena Grzesk, COO of the Council, attended the initial hearing and co-authored the white paper The Effects of Personal Care Services on Mental Health & Wellbeing in 2021.
On the publishing of recommendations, Grzesk said: ‘I’ve advocated for many years that the beauty industry has a vital role to play in supporting the physical health and mental wellbeing of the population; in turn easing some of the burden on the NHS. Our highly skilled workforce can work collaboratively with medical professionals to benefit individuals who have various diagnoses including chronic pain, fatigue, pre and post-menopausal symptoms, cancer symptoms and treatment side effects, and mental health.
‘I hope to see the recommendations from this report fully supported to demonstrate the efficacy of treatments through the funding of UK-based trials, in turn promoting the professionalism of the industry to create a health, not wealth-focused approach to wellbeing. Funding and development of ‘fit for purpose’ training and education will attract talent, promote career opportunities, and close the skill gap to meet the growing demand for touch therapy in the UK.’
Read the full report here.