WHO Traditional Medicine Strategy: 2002-2005
(2002; 70 pages) [French] [Spanish] View the PDF document
Table of Contents
View the documentAcknowledgements
View the documentAcronyms, abbreviations and WHO Regions
Close this folderKey points: WHO Traditional Medicine Strategy 2002 - 2005
View the documentWhat is traditional medicine?
View the documentWidespread and growing use
View the documentWhy such broad use?
View the documentUncritical enthusiasm versus uninformed scepticism
View the documentChallenges in developing TM/CAM potential
View the documentThe current role of WHO
View the documentFramework for action
View the documentStrategy implementation
Open this folder and view contentsChapter One: Global review
Open this folder and view contentsChapter Two: Challenges
Open this folder and view contentsChapter Three: The current role of WHO
Open this folder and view contentsChapter Four: International and national resources for traditional medicine
Open this folder and view contentsChapter Five: Strategy and plan of action 2002 - 2005
View the documentAnnex One: List of WHO Collaborating Centres for Traditional Medicine
Open this folder and view contentsAnnex Two: Selected WHO publications and documents on traditional medicine
View the documentReferences
View the documentBack Cover
 

What is traditional medicine?

"Traditional medicine" is a comprehensive term used to refer both to TM systems such as traditional Chinese medicine, Indian ayurveda and Arabic unani medicine, and to various forms of indigenous medicine. TM therapies include medication therapies - if they involve use of herbal medicinesa, animal parts and/or minerals - and non- medication therapies - if they are carried out primarily without the use of medication, as in the case of acupuncture, manual therapies and spiritual therapies. In countries where the dominant health care system is based on allopathic medicine, or where TM has not been incorporated into the national health care system, TM is often termed "complementary", "alternative" or "non-conventional" medicine.b

a Herbal medicines include herbs, herbal materials, herbal preparations and finished herbal products, that contain as active ingredients parts of plants, or other plant materials, or combinations thereof.

b Accordingly, in this document, "traditional medicine" is used when referring to Africa, Latin America, South-East Asia, and/or the Western Pacific, whereas "complementary and alternative medicine" is used when referring to Europe and/or America (and Australia). When referring in a general sense to all of these regions, the comprehensive TM/CAM is used.

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