Graduation Year


Document Type




Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.)

Degree Granting Department

Department of Global Health

Major Professor

Jaime Corvin, Ph.D.

Co-Major Professor

Yashwant Pathak, Ph.D., MPharm

Committee Member

Lakshminarayan Rajaram, Ph.D.

Committee Member

Aurora Sanchez-Anguiano, M.D., Ph.D.

Committee Member

Ann C. DeBaldo, Ph.D.


Complementary, Alternative, Health, Survey, Observational


Introduction: Global populations are increasingly pursuing Complementary and Alternative Medicines (CAM) as safe, holistic options to attain health and wellness. Homeopathy is one such system of medicine whose demand is growing across the world, with maximum users in India. Yet, patient satisfaction and experiences with Homeopathy have not been addressed comprehensively in India.

Methods: A two-phase, mixed-methods study was designed to assess patient satisfaction and patient experiences with Homeopathic medicines and clinics in Pune, India. Phase I included the design and validation of a survey on Homeopathy specific experiences in English and Marathi for collecting data. Phase II employed a cross- sectional study. Convenience sampling was used to recruit eligible patients at participating clinics of licensed Homeopathic physicians in Pune. Descriptive analysis and logistic regression were conducted respectively to examine patient experiences and to investigate their impact on satisfaction with Homeopathic medicines and clinics.

Results: In total, 1231 patients from 25 Homeopathic clinics participated in this study. Sixty one percent of participants were female. The majority (95.7%) reported feeling better after using Homeopathic medicines. An overwhelming number of participants were highly satisfied with Homeopathic medicines (95.9%), clinics (97.5%), and physicians (98.2%). Most participants reported that their Homeopathic physician was knowledgeable and capable of taking care of their illness. Participants who reported never having experienced any side effects after consuming Homeopathic medicines were 3.43 (95% CI 1.33-8.86) times more likely to be satisfied with Homeopathic medicines compared to those who reported experiencing side effects. Participants who reported that they preferred to use Homeopathic medicines for any acute illness instead of conventional medicine were 3.26 (95% CI 1.40-7.59) times more likely to be satisfied with Homeopathic medicines compared to those who reported they did not prefer to use Homeopathic medicines for acute illnesses.

Conclusions: This was the largest study assessing specific patient experiences and patient satisfaction with Homeopathy and the first ever in the state of Maharashtra, India. The study designed and validated a unique survey instrument for Homeopathy relevant experiences. The high levels of satisfaction reflect high acceptance for Homeopathy. Majority participants reporting never having experienced side effects suggests potential of Homeopathic medicines to be used as a therapeutic system to reduce costs otherwise incurred by Public Health systems in treatment of side effects. Participant preferences to use Homeopathy in acute (e.g. infections) and chronic conditions provide support to the role of Homeopathy in public health systems as a safe, effective, affordable treatment alternative. Results encourage development of models for best practices and collaborations between conventional medicine, Homeopathy and other CAM therapies for providing improved value based care (superior health outcomes at optimal cost).