A chiropractor has been convicted of false advertising after he claimed to be able to prevent, treat and cure cancer
Sydney chiropractor Dr Hance Limboro has been convicted and fined $29,500 after pleading guilty to 13 charges filed by the Australian Health Practitioner Regulation Agency in August 2016.
Dr Limboro was sentenced this month for unlawfully advertising a regulated health service and using testimonials.
His advertising appeared on a website called Cancer Cure Sydney. According to mainstream media reports covering the case, one of Dr Limboro’s online ads read, “By having a regular visit to a chiropractor, people can rest assured that they are prevented from having cancer”.
Another ad claimed that poor posture was believed to be the root of many conditions including cancer.
The Court’s decision has been welcomed by the chair of the Chiropractic Board of Australia, Dr Wayne Minter, who said that the conviction was a “win for public protection and a warning to anyone advertising health services in a way that contravenes the National Law”.
“Most chiropractors are doing the right thing,” he says. “However, the Board has been up front with the profession that if their advertising is not compliant with the law, they will be held to account.”
AHPRA CEO Martin Fletcher says the conviction was a landmark ruling and sent a warning to anyone who advertised regulated health services that the regulator will take action if they break the law.
“Our purpose, working closely with the Chiropractic Board of Australia, is to protect the public,” Mr Fletcher says.
“This shows that we will take action and that people breaking the law will be held to account. Making false claims to treat serious illnesses through unproven methods is both unethical and illegal.
“In her ruling Magistrate Viney said that while the practitioner personally may not have loaded the advertising onto the website in question, he could not deny responsibility. This is an important lesson for others who are advertising regulated health services.
“Today’s outcome is a reminder to all of us as health consumers and patients that if an advertisement seems too good to be true, it probably is.”