WHO to assist Ghana’s traditional medicine integration plans
The World Health Organisation (WHO) says it is ready to assist the government of Ghana to sustainably integrate traditional medicine into mainstream healthcare towards achieving universal health coverage.
According to WHO, the promotion of the herbal industry will position Ghana to harness its naturally endowed fortunes of rich and unique biodiversity for the desired economic transformation. The Country Representative for WHO, Prof. Francis Kasolo, made the remarks at the 2nd Oku Ampofo Memorial Conference in Accra.
The conference was organised by the Centre for Plant Medicine Research and the Ghana Federation of Traditional Medicine Practitioners Association (GHAFTRAM) under the theme: ‘Herbal Medicine Research; a panacea for economic transformation’.
It was attended by experts in the health sector including the Ghana Medical Association (GMA), herbal practitioners and the Pharmaceutical Society of Ghana.
With herbal medicine industry being one of the fastest growing industries in the world with a projected market value of $177.65 billion by 2029, Ghana stands to benefit immensely from the sector. It is said that 80% of the population of Africa relies on traditional medicine, while in Ghana between 60-70 % of Ghanaians depend on traditional medicine for their healthcare needs. Ghana is among 40 other African countries that have integrated traditional medicine practice into its policies, which has witnessed 56 district and regional facilities running the programme of integrated traditional healthcare systems.
Professor Francis Kasolo recommended the alignment of herbal products to good manufacturing practices and the licensing of these manufacturing facilities. He also commended the Centre for Plant Medicine Research, which is among 34 institutes in the African region dedicated to traditional medicines research.
“I will also like to use this platform to advocate for increased support and funding for research and development activities to formulate more products for prevention and rehabilitation that meets standards of quality of safety,” he stressed. On his part, Executive Director at the Centre for Plant Medicine Research Prof. Alex Asase said the vision of the Centre is to make plant medicine a preferred natural choice for all.
According to him, the Centre will strive to gain the highest recognition for its research and development of herbal products that meet the exacting needs of patients and industry whiles promoting innovative, scientific research and productive partnerships.
Story by Fada Amakye from Daily Sun106.com