History of Homeopathy in Belgium

Dr. Pierre Joseph De Moor (1787-1845) was the first Medical Doctor practising homoeopathy at Alost in Belgium (1829 - West Flemish side). In 1832, Dr. Varlez (1792-1874) and Carlier (1797-1873) brought homoeopathy to Brussels.

The first Organon appeared only in 1832 (Paris) in the same time that the first Homoeopathic Pharmacopoeia (Leipzig); in 1934 Dr. Quin created the first English pharmacopoeia (London); Hahnemann died in 1843.

The earliest journal was published in Brussels in 1856. Dr. Jahr, one of Hahnemann’s first followers, was practising Homoeopathy in Paris but in 1870 (French-German war) he had to escape from France and take refuge in Brussels. Belgian's doctors asked him to give lessons in Homoeopathy and to practice near the centre of the city; in one year time he treated 12.000 patients. More than 50 Belgian’s doctors were educated in homoeopathy by Jahr himself. In 1894, 70 doctors officially used homoeopathy for their patients and 50 pharmacists were delivering the medications to patients.

Dr. Fréderick Foster Quin was the private medical doctor of prince Leopold (later King of Belgium). The first contact of the prince with homoeopathy happens during one of his trip to Italy. Scientific curiosity push him to meet Hahnemann in Paris, they frequently meet during one year. This explains why the Belgian royal family is still treated with homoeopathy today. It was Dr. Quin that introduced homoeopathy in England; he was the founder of the Royal London Homoeopathic Hospital.

During Jahr's time in Brussels, many doctors were travelling to Brussels (by train) to learn homoeopathy. In 1871, the decision to create a Society of Homoeopathic M.D. was taken in this train. Today the "Société Royale Belge d'Homéopathie - S.R.B.H." is still active for exchanges around the best use of homoeopathy.

In 1926, the "Association Homéopathique Belge - A.H.B." was created for juridical purposes (the S.R.B.H. was created for scientific matters). The organisation of Congresses, the publication of the Belgian Homoeopathic Journal, the creation of the Belgian Homoeopathic School and the constitution of a Belgian Homoeopathic Library were activities of this association. In 1972 the A.H.B. was in charge of a World Congress in Brussels. In 1976 this association was replaced by the "Fédération Homéopathique Belge - F.H.B." that inherit all goods of the A.H.B. During all this time the education in Homoeopathy was only possible in the Belgian School in Brussels. The amount of students was growing so fast that begin the eighties different schools were created in different Belgian cities (Gent - Antwerpen - Namur - Liège - Huy - Hechtel). During this period certainly fifty M.D. achieved their education in Homoeopathy each year.

In 1988, the "Unio Homoeopathica Belgica - UNIO" was recognized by the Belgian authorities. This professional union was necessary to defend homoeopathy on a political level. Today 300 Homoeopathic M.D. are members of this union (the membership includes a professional insurance) and 4.000 M.D. are prescribing homoeopathic medications at least sometimes (Belgium have +/- 40.000 M.D.). During last years more and more homoeopathic M.D. organizes local groups for regularly exchanges on their mutual experiences.