PulsePharmacy Follow-up

While admittedly quite late, I finally got around to writing up and sending off my response to the reply from PulsePharmacy’s Senior Buyer regarding Eken PowerBands, and packaged it up along with other nonsense products they are selling through a recent news article featuring CHOICE

My initial E-Mail sent to PulsePharmacy, and their reply can be found here.

Thanks for your response regarding Pulse Pharmacy’s continued support for Eken PowerBands.

Eken PowerBands are not TGA R (Registered), rather they are TGA L (Listed) and as such Eken does not need to meet any kind of Standard to be listed by the TGA that would lend ANY kind of credence to their product — Unfortunately, they must only *claim* they have evidence. There is NO requirement to present the evidence to scrutiny by the TGA.

Interesting though that you said they meet the TGA requirements; perhaps they have supplied you with the scientific evidence they will provide to the TGA when they are investigated?

There is no good supporting evidence for the claimed mechanism of Eken’s PowerBands, and the continued sale of them, as is endorsed by Pulse Pharmacy, poses serious questions regarding Pulse Pharmacy’s ethical commitment to it’s consumers; even more so when some of the “tests” used in videos to support their claims require deliberate fraud to occur.

Refer: http://revision3.com/scamschool/placebobands

Surely, you understand that as you operate under the prestige of the title “Pharmacy”, consumers — and more to the point, the sick, look to Pharmacies for evidence based treatments for whatever their ailement may be.

To say this is a once-off lapse in product research would be disingenuous, as in the same store there were magnetic bracelets being sold as “Wellness Bracelets” — again, no evidence to support the implication that the bracelet would encourage this vague “Wellness”. But, for consumers, perhaps those that are ignorant, gullible, or desperate; they will buy those products in the sincere belief that their lives may be improved.

Perhaps you’ve seen the recent article:

Pharmacies selling ‘quack’ health products, CHOICE investigation reveals
Read more: http://www.news.com.au/breaking-news/pharmacies-selling-quack-health-products-choice-investigation-reveals/story-e6frfku0-1226018381502#ixzz1GQRnn4Hb

I strongly encourage Pulse Pharmacy to discontinue the sale of, and distance itself from the advocacy of Eken’s PowerBands and fraudulent claims. Pharmacies should get back to being places that only sell evidenced-based medicine; not a gift shop selling people “what they want to buy”.

I would suggest that a serious look your entire range of products would be prudent; perhaps it would provide shelf-space for actual health products and may prevent legal action under the newly released Australian Consumer Laws. (ACL).

Regards,
Bayani Mills

Pulse Pharmacy Replies re: Eken PowerBands

In reply to a recent E-Mail, Pulse Pharmacy (Australia) got back to me the other day with the following:

Hi Bayani

We are very aware of the bad press surrounding the Powerbalance bands and have certainly been monitoring the situation closely. We have a close relationship with Eken powerbands and are aware they have also been monitored closely by the ACCC but have been assured that their product is not breaching any standards. They have also met all TGA requirements.

We appreciate your feedback and we will continue to monitor this category closely.

Pulse Pharmacy, in addition to selling EKEN PowerBands within their stores, sells these Bands via their website. (http://www.pulsepharmacy.com.au/Product/Eken-Powerband-Blue–and–White-Extra-Small.aspx)

The 4 nFIT holograms result in a higher potency product which the wearer can instantly recognise.
•    Strength
•    Balance
•    Flexibility
•    Endurance
Wearers have reported increased core strength, balance, flexibility and endurance. See Testimonials for some great reports!

EKEN’s website (http://www.ekenpowerbands.com.au/specials/) quotes similar “hologram technology” to the recently reprimanded PowerBalance, stating:

nFIT (nano Frequency Infusion Technology) is our proprietary system for programming the EKEN holograms. This method ensures that each hologram receives a highly concentrated dose of the frequencies required to produce the highest quality power band on the market.

Personally, I’m really disappointed in the reply from Pulse Pharmacy; it’s a laissez-faire response to a situation where Pulse Pharmacy should be active in ensuring their products supply their consumers with effective treatments; and as a Senior Buyer – this is where I think their focus should be.

Pulse Pharmacy is seemingly more like a retail outlet with a licence to prescribe evidence-based medicines. I’m not even sure if their spin on “bad press” regarding PowerBalance is out of arrogance or ignorance.

Pulse Pharmacy stated that because they’ve been “assured” Ekan are not breaking ACCC standards, this makes it ethically OK to do so. Pulse Pharmacy noted that Eken met all the TGA requirements, which doesn’t say much at all. Listed Products aren’t required to provide evidence; just state that they have some in their possession.

PowerBalance made the same claim too, until the TGA withdrew representation after investigating due to complaints. (http://www.tgacrp.com.au/index.cfm?pageID=13&special=complaint_single&complaintID=1650)

I guess I’ll have to write up a response. In the mean time, I encourage you to do the same thing too!

Update: In response to a recent comment, I will include this link to another page that describes the EKEN Powerband Scam.

An Open Letter to Pulse Pharmacy

To Pulse Pharmacy,

While in one of your stores, specifically the Brookvale store at Warringah Mall, I noticed a display featuring the EKAN Power Band on your Service Desk.

Perhaps it has slipped by you, but recently the ACCC ordered PowerBalance, a Brand name offering the same “technology” as EKAN, to cease selling their product in Australia after Power Balance admitted that it has engaged in misleading and deceptive conduct in breach of s. 52 of the Trade Practices Act 1974. – http://www.accc.gov.au/content/index.phtml/itemId/964065

ACCC Chairman Graeme Samuel went on to warn consumers of  “***SIMILAR*** products on the market that make unsubstantiated claims, when they may be no more beneficial than a rubber band,” You can hear the comments made by the ACCC Chairman at http://bit.ly/hitQLR

EKAN states clearly on their website regarding their hologram “technology”:
“Each (EKAN) Power band is made of high-grade silicone and embedded with 4 nFIT holograms.”

Holograms? Yes, holograms. EKAN claim they give their Holograms a:
“highly concentrated dose of frequencies” —

Not withstanding the fact EKAN have misused the term “frequencies”, EKAN provide no scientific evidence to support its claims – At all. The public expects, and deserves it’s pharmacies to provide only science-based medicine. Placebo is not an alternative to actual efficacious, medical treatment; and Pulse Pharmacy shouldn’t be in the business of knowingly misleading it’s customers.

To also sell it straight from your website is disgusting and immoral.
http://www.pulsepharmacy.com.au/Product/Eken-Powerband-Black–and–White-Extra-Small.aspx

I hope you will reconsider your decision to sell this sham product, having now been informed of this, to do nothing would be making Pulse Pharmacy complicit in the scamming of your customers.

Regards,

Bayani Mills