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Quacks spread false hope and endanger people’s lives

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Posted 26 April 2016

This article, Quacks spread false hope and endanger people’s lives, by Professor George Claassen, was published online (25 April 2016) at Bhekisisa, Centre for Health Journalism. Prof Claasen is an important and vocal voice against pseudoscience.

Professor George Claassen is director of the Centre for Science and Technology Mass Communication (Censcom), at Stellenbosch University. He is the author of a book on quackery in Africa, Quacks, Tricksters and Scamsters: How a nonsense detector can save your life, which will be published later this year.

Some extracts:

“Why do apparently irrational beliefs claim so many strong and vocal adherents? Why, when these beliefs are demonstrably false, is it often impossible to shift the mind-sets of the believers?

The action against a professional health practitioner who prescribed prayer as a solution – without any scientific evidence that it can work and beyond the boundaries of her

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