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Q: Who are these organisations? ( Answered 5 out of 5 stars,   0 Comments )
Subject: Who are these organisations?
Category: Health > Alternative
Asked by: celtman-ga
List Price: $5.00
Posted: 27 Apr 2004 22:57 PDT
Expires: 27 May 2004 22:57 PDT
Question ID: 337425
What can you tell me about the Alternative Medicines Research Institute
(AMRI)in Gibralter, European Union? Are they a legitimate
complementary medicine institution or do they issue 'suspect' mail
order (or correspondence) Doctorates? Are they fully government
accredited (ie. part of a university or similar) or are they just a
private 'business'?

They are affiliated with the Open International University of
Complimentary Medicines, Colombo, Sri Lanka. Is this a legitimate
organisation (it seems to have government accreditation) or do they
just hand out 'dubious' qualifications (ie. obtain a medical
degree in one year by correspondence)?

Many thanks.
Subject: Re: Who are these organisations?
Answered By: sublime1-ga on 28 Apr 2004 00:08 PDT
Rated:5 out of 5 stars

The following references indicate that these are both shady

The first is an extensive post on Google Groups, on the group, by Earon Kavanagh. Note that
the date on this post is 6/18/2000, and the AMRI is said
to be located in Vancouver. It seems unlikely, as we shall
see from the association with the Open International 
University of Complimentary Medicines, that this is an
entirely different organization from the one referenced
on Dr Stephen Byrnes' website which is said to be, as you
noted, in Gibraltar, European Union. Dr Byrnes page is here:

The posting on

"Today, the torch of academic excellence has passed from 
 Col. Munro to Egbert Phipps, MD, PhD, MSc, BSc (all degrees
 from the London-based Royal Society of Health), who runs the
 Alternative Medicines Research Institute (AMRI) in Vancouver.
 How does the Institute compare to Senior? Phipps promises
 prospective students a doctoral degree in alternative medicine
 as fast as they can dispatch their resume and a letter
 detailing their enthusiasm and research experience in the
 much-misunderstood field of the 'laying on of hands.'"


"A mere week after speaking with Phipps I received a
 congratulatory letter embossed with a fake gold stamp.
 My voice mail and e-mail mentioned my real first name,
 and I was forced to use "Neil" in a series of
 back-and-forth messages to the Institute to prove my
 bona fides: So Phipps's letter was addressed to 
 "The Most Honourable Doctor Neil Caulfield." 
 I had passed already! Even without seeing any of my
 qualifications, Phipps was "pleased to convey the 
 recommendation of The Board of Directors and Trustees
 to award you the Doctor of Philosophy degree specializing
 in Holistic Medicines." My telephone manner had clearly
 impressed him. But he would be even more impressed, he
 wrote, if I shelled out US$550 for the "Committee's
 review fees" in addition to "processing and graduation
 fees" of US$100. Since Calgary Tech is now defunct, this
 means AMRI is the best deal in Canada for a quick and
 dirty degree. When he's not busy laying on hands, it
 seems, Phipps runs another Vancouver-based diploma-mill,
 George Washington University, Inc., which offers degrees
 at the Bachelor's, Master's, and Doctorate levels -- 
 also without the irritation of real coursework."
Highlighted link for easy reference:

The second reference, to the Open International University
of Complimentary Medicines in Sri Lanka, comes from a pdf
file on the site of the Council of Scientific and Industrial
Research in New Delhi:

"Copy of CSIR letter No. 17/66/27/94-PPS dated 18.11.1998
 to all Heads of national Labs./Instts.
*Sub: D.Sc. Degree awarded by Open International University
 for Complimentary Medicines, Colombo- No recognition to be
 I am directed to forward herewith a copy of letter No.
 IOE/D/98/1381 dated 27.8.98 from Dr. S.K. Jain, Director,
 Institute of Ethnobiology, C/o NBRI, Lucknow alongwith a
 copy of letter dated 12.8.98 from UGC regarding nonvalidity
 of D.Sc. Degree awarded by Open International University for
 Complimentary Medicines, Colombo and informing that no
 recognition should be given to the Degree/Diploma or any
 other academic distinction conferred by this University,
 for your information and record."


"Copy of letter No. F.7-3/90(FU) dated 12.8.2000 from
 University Grants Commission, New Delhi to Dr. S.K. Jain,
 Director, Indian Instt. of Biotechnology, Lucknow.

"The Commission is grateful to you for bringing to its
 Notice about the award of Ph.D. and D.Sc. degrees by the
 Open International University for Complimentary Medicines,
 Colombo, Sri Lanka. Subsequently to receipt of your letter
 No. IOE/D/97/1089 dt. 28.1.1998, the Commission also
 received a letter from the Vice-Chairman, the Bar Council
 of Gujarat informing us on the above subject. In support of
 this, he has also enclosed a letter No. UGC/L/81 dt.9.2.1998
 from the Chairman, UGC, Sri Lanka, stating that the Open
 International University for Complimentary Medicines has
 not been established or recognized as a Higher Educational
 Institution/Institute, under the Universities Act. No. 16
 of 1978 as amended. Therefore, any such Degree or other
 academic distinction issued by this institution is not
 valid in law in Sri Lanka. A copy of the letter is enclosed
 for your information. The Commission is issuing a circular
 to all the Universities/Deemed to be Universities/Institutes
 of National Importance/IITs asking them not to give any
 recognition to the Degree/Diploma or any other academic
 distinction conferred by The Open International University
 for Complimentary Medicines, Sri Lanka."
Much more on the highlighted Google cache page:,+Colombo,+Sri+Lanka&hl=en&lr=lang_en

Original pdf file:

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Additional information can be gleaned from further exploration
of the links provided above, as well as those resulting from the
Google searches, outlined below.

Searches done, via Google and Google Groups:

"Alternative Medicines Research Institute"

Open International University Complimentary Medicines, Colombo, Sri Lanka

AMRI "Gibraltar, European Union"
celtman-ga rated this answer:5 out of 5 stars
Good work sublime1-ga!

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