Although it is likely that immigrants from England brought homeopathy with them, the first homeopath of record in New Zealand was William Purdie, MD, of Airdrie Scotland and a graduate of Glasgow. He arrived in December, 1849, and settled in Dunedin. Shortly after, Dr Carl Frank Fischer, a medical graduate from Berlin settled in Auckland. He published the first New Zealand homeopathic journal, The Homœopathic Echo, from 1855 to 1856.
Fischer established the Homœopathic Association in 1857, and a homeopathic hospital in 1858. The hospital saw 1047 patients from the time it opened until it closed in 1862. During the time it was open, the mortality rate at the hospital was 2.2%. Fischer left New Zealand for Australia in 1869.
The Echo was published with the support of John Bell’s Homœopathic Pharmacy in Auckland. Another pharmacy, that of J. A. Pond, was eventually taken over by Marriage’s Pharmacy in 1880. In 1931, Marriage’s reported that they “have a great trade, entirely with families.”
The NZ Homœopathic Society was founded in 1951 by Alfred G. Grove, a lay practitioner. Grove died in 1974 but the Society is still in existence and has its meeting rooms and library in Mt. Eden, in Auckland.
The practice of homeopathy in New Zealand falls under common law as it does in Great Britain. One can practice homeopathy without having a medical licence. There are several homeopathic physicians, some of whom are on the register as well. There is no separate register or organization for medically qualified homeopaths.
There are currently about 120 qualified homeopaths on the register of the New Zealand Council of Homeopaths.
There are four manufacturing homeopathic pharmacies in New Zealand and a number of chemist shops that offer a full range of homeopathic products and potencies.
There is currently one dedicated homeopathic college operating in New Zealand: The College of Natural Health and Homeopathy with branches in Auckland, Tauranga and Christchurch. See www.cnhh.ac.nz Homeopathy is also taught as an elective in some naturopathic schools in New Zealand.