Using the collected data and information from the Global Survey, a WHO global database was created. The purposes of the database are to:
• collect and update country information on national TM/CAM policy and regulation of herbal medicines
• share information and experience of national policy on TM/CAM and regulation of herbal medicines to facilitate the establishment of relevant national policy and regulations
• monitor country progress in the field of TM/CAM, particularly that relating to the safe and effective use of herbal medicines
• identify the most difficult areas in countries and the kinds of assistance and support which Member States need from WHO
• continue updating the information in the future.
The information in the database is listed under 21 qualitative and quantitative structural indicators, which are intended to assess the situation of TM/CAM policies and herbal medicine regulation. Analysis of the survey results will provide the basis for further development of a comprehensive set of indicators, including background and process indicators, for the monitoring of national TM/CAM policies and herbal medicine regulation.
In the database, users will be able to find not only the countries’ replies to the questionnaire, but also the detailed information on the laws and regulations themselves, as well as further regulatory requirements, monographs and pharmacopoeias. Unfortunately, these details have not been translated into English because of lack of funds.
Finally, after consultation with national drug authorities, it was decided to open the WHO global database only to the national health authorities at present, not to the general public.
WHO plans to continue to update and expand the database. A second survey will be undertaken in the near future, upon the completion of the WHO Traditional Medicine Strategy.
Dr Xiaorui Zhang
Coordinator of Traditional Medicine
Department of Technical Cooperation for
Essential Drugs and Traditional Medicine
World Health Organization