To move nearer to a convincing assessment of the extent to which the medical profession has acted altruistically in establishing a predominantly negative climate of reception of acupuncture from the early nineteenth century onwards in Britain, more direct evidence on the influence of professional self-interests is clearly needed in this field. As will be recalled from the theoretical and methodological framework set out earlier in this book, two further prerequisites need to be met before the central role of such interests in decision-making can be accepted. First, it must be established that the professional group under consideration had sufficient political resources to influence the direction of decision-making in its favour and that it deployed these resources accordingly. Second, the interests of the group must be shown to be compatible with the policy followed in the case being scrutinized. The extent to which these prerequisites have been met will now be examined to evaluate how far the vested interests of the British medical profession-or sub-sections thereof-can be seen to have played a major part in the medical response to acupuncture, starting with the question of whether key elements of the profession have both possessed the power to relegate the method to a tangential position in the health care system and employed such power to this end.