(1991; 36 pages)
2.5 The importance of a common language
WHO has no official policy on the use of acupuncture in national health care delivery systems and, in fact, the subject has not been debated by its governing bodies. The field has developed considerably in the last two decades, both in theory and practice, but the exact role that acupuncture can play in health care remains to be determined. Any decision to use acupuncture in a national health service is, of course, the prerogative of the Member State concerned.
Putting acupuncture on a firm scientific basis requires rigorous investigation of the claims made for its efficacy. Many institutions and modern medical colleges are carrying out useful investigations to this end. Some are looking into the physiology and mode of action of acupuncture treatment, others are studying its efficacy in certain pathological conditions. These workers need to exchange information with one another regularly so as to facilitate their clinical and basic research. Such international communication is possible only if a common language is used by all concerned.