“The clinic had been run by Healing Touch Townsville with clinics conducted for a few hours every fortnight in a JCU building on the campus.
“JCU had no contractual or financial relationship with the clinic and was not involved in the running of the clinic. JCU staff were not employed to work at the clinic.
“James Cook University has decided that the clinic will no longer operate on its campus.
“JCU does not promote nor teach Healing Touch in its science-based nursing programs.”
Healing (or therapeutic) touch, as it is promoted, is a pseudoscience through and through. It might be nice to have someone wave their hands over you, enabling the practitioner to detect and manipulate what they say is the patient’s ‘energy field’, but it is similar to and just as scientific (ie, not) as Reiki and the ‘laying on of hands’ practices of faith healers. (By the way – don’t stand at the foot of the patient, as you might get bad energy flicked all over you by the practitioner.)
The University said the clinic had nothing to do with them. However, some of the issues raised included that the clinic was located in a university building on campus that they leased out to various organisations, a Senior Lecturer in JCU’s College of Healthcare Sciences, Centre for Nursing and Midwifery Research was a supporter (she also promoted a “Healing Touch Level One masterclass” on the university’s website last year), and a practitioner had been photographed wearing a JCU shirt.
The revelations about the clinic’s association with the University – however tenuous – obviously hurt, so congratulations to them for eventually acting decisively.
The Healing Touch Clinic is now looking for a new home “due to recent events”.
Stewart earlier told Australian Skeptics that: “Reference to previous activities undertaken by the Healing Touch group have been misrepresented as being JCU activities. This will not occur in the future.”
Let’s hope so.