Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt
Health secretary Jeremy Hunt believes the UK should not 'discount different methods of treatment'Reuters

Health secretary Jeremy Hunt pushed pro-homeopathy studies on to the chief medical officer and asked her to review the treatment's perceived medical benefits, despite the NHS stand on alternative medicines, which regards many of them unproven.

Hunt, who is responsible for running the NHS, is said to have asked Prof Dame Sally Davies to review three studies which examined the possible health benefits of homeopathy.

The studies were funded by Laboratoires Boiron, one of the world's largest manufacturers of homeopathic products, such as children's cough medicines and arthritis creams.

In emails seen by Buzzfeed, Hunt argued that Britain should not "discount different methods of treatment if they prove to be effective" and would pass further pro-homeopathic studies to Davies.

Hunt has been criticised in the past for backing the alternative treatment, which is based on administrating highly diluted substances to help the body heal itself.

A guide to homeopathy on the NHS website states there is "no good-quality evidence" that homeopathy is effective as a treatment for any health condition.

A 2010 House of Commons Science and Technology Committee report added homeopathic remedies performed no better than placebos and relied on principles which are "scientifically implausible".

The health secretary continues to be a supporter of the controversial treatment and believes it should be available on the health service.

Davies was said to have rejected the studies sent to her by Hunt. She said it was "difficult to draw useful conclusions" from two of the trials and a third, which examined homeopathic treatment of patients with musculoskeletal disorders, was skewed in favour of positive findings and had a "relatively low response rate".

The Department of Health said it had no plans to implement homeopathy at a national level.

A spokesperson said: "It is the responsibility of local NHS organisations to make decisions on the commissioning and funding of any healthcare treatments for NHS patients, such as homeopathy."