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academic physician and researcher specializing in the study of complementary and alternative medicinewd:Q70166
country of citizenship:
Germany, United Kingdom
language of expression: German
educated at: Ludwig Maximilian University of Munich
occupation: columnist, journalist, physician, university teacher
award received: John Maddox Prize, Fellow of the Committee for Skeptical Inquiry
position held: editor-in-chief
Edzard Ernst (born 30 January 1948) is an academic physician and researcher specializing in the study of complementary and alternative medicine. He was formerly Professor of Complementary Medicine at the University of Exeter, the first such academic position in the world.
Ernst served as chairman of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation (PMR) at the University of Vienna, but left this position in 1993 to set up the department of Complementary Medicine at the University of Exeter in England. He became director of complementary medicine of the Peninsula Medical School (PMS) in 2002. Ernst was the first occupant of the Laing chair in Complementary Medicine, retiring in 2011. He was born and trained in Germany, where he began his medical career at a homeopathic hospital in Munich, and since 1999 has been a British citizen.
Ernst is the founder of two medical journals: Focus on Alternative and Complementary Therapies (of which he was editor-in-chief until it was discontinued in 2016) and Perfusion. Ernst's writing appeared in a regular column in The Guardian, where he reviewed news stories about complementary medicine from an evidence-based medicine perspective. Since his research began on alternative modalities, Ernst has been seen as "the scourge of alternative medicine" for publishing critical research that exposes methods that lack documentation of efficacy. In 2015 he was awarded the John Maddox Prize, sponsored jointly by Sense About Science and Nature, for courage in standing up for science. Harriet Hall calls Ernst the "world's foremost expert ... on CAM".
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