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06.11.2008 Health

Gov`t commended for showing interest in herbal medicine

By Albert Nana Asante, Obuasi - Ghanaian Chronicle

THE PRESIDENT of the Ghana Phytological Society of Ghana, Dr. Michelle Le Claire, has commended the Government and the Ministry of Health for showing an interest in herbal medicine, by coming out with the Traditional Medicine Practice Act.

He explained that the establishment of Traditional Medicine Practice Council indicated the commitment of both the Ministry of Health and the government, towards the use and practice of copious plants in the country.

Addressing participants at a day's workshop organised at Obuasi over the weekend, Dr. Le Claire appealed to media practitioners in the country, to help in promoting professional practice and the use of herbal medicine.

“The media has a great role to play in changing the wrong perception about the use of herbal medicine in the country,” he stressed.

Topics treated at the workshop, which brought together over 40 participants including media practitioners, included “What is herbal medicine, plant medicine? - Is it local or modern? How do herbs work? And differences between pharmaceutical and herbal medicine.”

The rest were advantages and disadvantages of taking herbal medicine, evaluation of the effectiveness of herbal medicine, and information sharing for the promotion of plant medicine.

The programme was under the theme “Herbal Medicine - how do we know what works.”

The President of the Ghana Phytological Society of Ghana added that the time had come for Ghanaians, especially media practitioners, to give more recognition to herbal medicines.

He spoke against the bad handling of drugs by herbal medicine sellers, and advised that “the bad perception about herbal medicine will only change, if we (herbalists) carry our duties professionally.”

A participant, Madam Vivian Acquah, commended the organisers for the workshop, and said it had broadened their knowledge on the use of herbal medicine.