The Advertising Standards Agency (ASA) -
the UK's independent regulator for advertising across all
media - have upheld two very important judgements with
respect to the claims that the Phil Parker Group Ltd was
The ASA judgement has been published for all to see -
for the full article click here.
1. The ASA have upheld that the claims with respect to
treatment of ME/CFS, in particular the 80-90% claims of
success, were misleading. They have also upheld that the LP
is a medical therapy with respect to the law and not
a training program.
2. The ASA have also upheld that the claims with respect to
MS, IBS/digestive issues, food and chemical intolerances,
eating disorders, addiction, depression, FM/chronic pain,
phobias/anxiety/stress, low self-esteem and OCD, are both
misleading and should not appear again as they could prevent
people from seeking proper treatment from appropriately
medically qualified practitioners for those conditions.
This judgement upholds the most serious issues that were
raised with respect to the Phil Parker Group.
This may also have
serious implications for Dr Esther Crawley in that she has gained consent for a medical trial (the SMILE
study) - something which ought to be scrutinised again
to determine if information
used to justify that study was factually false or misleading.
Did Dr Crawley
know, or should she have known, that the Phil Parker
Group was under
Did Dr Crawley know, or should she have
known, of the
implications from the investigation for her trial and for the consent of participants?
would parents have consented had they known that the Phil Parker
Group was under investigation and that claims made were
"misleading"? Consent is the most important rule in medical ethics after
Furthermore, it has to be asked if there is an issue with respect to the
classification of the medical trial. The ASA have ruled that the LP is a
medical treatment. Yet did Dr
Crawley not gain approval for her trial by classifying the LP as a
questionnaire/training program, and thereby avoiding from
subject to the same requirements of safety as a medical
Should the SMILE study be totally dropped
now that ASA has told the Phil Parker Group "...not to
refer to conditions for which advice should be sought from
suitably qualified health professionals"?
to the implications of the judgement the Hampshire Trading
Standards have confirmed
that the ASA judgement can be used as supporting evidence
that people were mislead into buying the product. Therefore
anyone that wants their money back can write to Phil Parker
Group and claim negligent misrepresentation. Possibly their house
insurance may cover the costs of this, or the small claims
court is also available.
The ASA judgement should be raised with
the SW2 Regional Ethics Committee that granted approval for
the LP trial.
The work to uncover this has been
performed by determined patients who have not relented in
their quest for the truth, despite this taking a huge toll
on their health.
We can only thank them for their efforts.