(1999; 43 pages)
The Ministers of Health of the South-East Asia Region during their meeting in September 1998 had strongly emphasized that the rich heritage of traditional medicine in the countries of the Region was a resource which should be used more effectively in implementing primary health care. There is a need to share information among countries about the use of medicinal plants, their safety and efficacy, and how to exploit a vast and increasing potential for export of such plants from the Region. There is also a need to strengthen national centres of expertise in traditional medicine and to designate more WHO collaborating centres in order to strengthen regional and intercountry cooperation.
A Regional Consultation on Development of Traditional Medicine in the South-East Asia Region was held in the WHO South East Asia Regional Office (SEARO), New Delhi, from 14 to 17 September 1999. The objectives of the meeting were as follows:
To promote the development and strengthening of national traditional medicine programmes and district health systems in the countries of the South-East Asia Region.
- To discuss national policy and strategy for the development and use of traditional medicine.
- To strengthen traditional medicine (TRM) programmes and identify their possible role in the district health system (DHS)/primary health care (PHC).
- To strengthen the involvement of WHO collaborating centres and national centres of expertise on TRM and PHC in improving DHS.
- To identify areas and topics for operational research that would help in achieving the above specific objectives.