Research, Dev’t Roadmap for Traditional Medicine Launched

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Addis Ababa September  30/2019 Ministry of Health in collaboration with Ethiopian Public Health Institute launched on Monday a road map for research and development of traditional medicine.

As conventional drugs remain the basis of medicine, traditional medicine is a surrogate remedy to diagnose various diseases.

The use of traditional medicinal products and supplements has increased enormously with not less than 80 percent of people worldwide relying on them for some part of primary healthcare.

Cognizant the persistent use of traditional medicine, Ethiopia has introduced roadmap for research and development of traditional medicines that would help to integrate with the conventional ones.  

Stake holders drawn from different institutions across the country including universities and research institutes are deliberating on the long awaited national road map on research and development of traditional medicines.

On the occasion, Minister of Health, Dr. Amir Aman, said the roadmap is imperative to slot in traditional and modern medicines through scientific researches for a better health service.

Ethiopia has over 6, 500 species of medicinal herbs, various animal products and minerals useful for medical purposes.

Although therapies involving traditional medicines have shown encouraging potential with the efficacy of a good quality of healing, many of them remain unproven and their use are poorly scrutinized.

It becomes crucial, therefore, that relevant regulatory authorities put in place appropriate measures to protect public health by ensuring that all traditional medicines are safe and of suitable quality.

The strategic objectives of the road map encompasses formation of a modern data base for documentation, strengthening coordination and control mechanisms and preservation of indigenous resources and knowledge, it was learned.

More than 80 percent of the populations of Ethiopia receive traditional medicines, Amir noted, adding that useful and harmful traditional medicines would be identified for standardized use.

A council will be established to consult and mediate on upcoming issues to be raised between the government and the practitioners of traditional medicines, it was indicated.

The Ministry of Health has reportedly earmarked 90 million birr budget for the implementation of the roadmap, it was indicated.

Amir also indicated that the health policy is under revision and will be finalized in this Ethiopian fiscal year.

There are more than 14,000 traditional medicine practitioners in the country, until December 2018 which only 40 of these are certified by Ministry of Health.