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18.05.2009 General News

Stakeholders Meeting Discusses Herbal Medicine Practice

By Sarolta Saskiw -
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An unofficial report on the 2009 Professional Qualifying Examination Interview (PQEI) for medical herbalists has revealed that candidates did not emphasize the need to refer urgent and life threatening cases to hospital.

In addition, some of the candidates found it difficult to readily prescribe known herbal remedies as a first line of treatment.

The candidates have, at least, a one year non-practice period after the completion of the internship programme before the PQEI.

These findings were presented at a stakeholders meeting yesterday to discuss the practice of traditional herbal medicine.

They looked at issues surrounding the training programme that herbal medical interns go through, observing where their training has fallen short and where it can improve.

Some of the challenges the interns were presented with included lack of structured pre-examination tutorials, or training facilities for internship  and the absence of existing guidelines for the internship programme.

One of the recommendations that came out of the meeting with the medical herbalist interns was the need for consultation with all stakeholders to develop structured pre-exams tutorials and  the guidelines for the internship programme.

Other recommendations made included the necessity for the acceleration of the development of  specialised herbal medicine training facility, and the need for regular consultations between the Traditional Medicine Practice Council (TMPC) and training institutions in order to make sure interns are receiving appropriate training.

According to TMPC, the meeting with the interns was successful and interns were happy that  interest had been shown or expressed in connection with their welfare.

Thus, an implementation of the recommendations will enhance the credibility of the internship programme. It will also put candidates in a better position for the PQEI.

TMPC said that it will soon provide a full report to the public.

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