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September 12, 2018 | Feature Article

Evidence Based Ethnomedical Practice, The Cardinal Tool In Achieving The Goals Of Universal Health Coverage For Econimic Growth, Maximum Productivity And Sustainability

…. Presentation at the occasion of the maiden world ethnomedicine day celebration in delta-state, nigeria. saturday 1st september 2018

Dr. Nyarkotey delivering the key note address in Nigeria-Delta State
Dr. Nyarkotey delivering the key note address in Nigeria-Delta State

The Distinguished Chairman, Dr. Austin Izagbo, His Excellency Professor Isaac Adewale, Hon. Minister of Health, His Excellency Sen(Dr.) Chris Ngige, Hon. Minister of Labour and Productivity, His Excellency Sen(Dr.)Arthur Ifeayi Okowa, executive Governor of Delta State , stakeholders of this noble program, Practitioners and friends of evidence-based ethnomedicine. All protocol observed!

Good Afternoon!
I bring you greetings from the Holistic Medical Community in Ghana and would like to thank all of you for taking the time out of your busy schedules to attend this unique program on such an occasion to mark the World Ethnomedicine Day.

I would like to say congratulations to My Friend, Dr. Benjamin Ajufo and his team for taking such a bold decision to organize such a program.

Mr. Chairman, the theme for this conference is “Evidence Based Ethnomedical Practice, The Cardinal Tool In Achieving The Goals Of Universal Health Coverage For Economic Growth, Maximum Productivity And Sustainability

First of all, I would like to assure you that this lecture, as has been the case with all my write ups in the newspapers and scientific journals and presentations, will be based on an objective analysis of the evidence we have on ethnomedicine. Finally, the evidence and the facts will speak for themselves as I know the medical community believes in statistics and evidence based; so I deal with them based on evidence.

Mr. Chairman: I have been studying cancer of the prostate for about nine (9) years, and spend my days immersed in research, writing, and consulting on cancer and healing through the intelligent use of brilliant medicine. What fuels my passion: A desire to be of service, devotion to heal the black race and provide brilliant medical information? My hope is that my patients will discover information, inspiration, and encouragement that will guide them in their journey to optimal health and wellbeing. I am more than happy to see close to two million people have access my articles on Modernghana alone in my column page. The number of calls I do received surprises me when my article are published.

Mr. Chairman, when I started prostate cancer research and promoting evidence based ethnomedicine in Ghana, no one believed me. They had no respect to ethnomedicine practitioners but along the line, they had no option but to believe it. Today, Mr. Chairman, it will interest you to know that Top Class Urologists in Academia now cite my work. Those in ethnomedical Field are not really interested in the attractiveness nature of their Profession but these are people on an assignment. It is the assignment that drives us and not the attractiveness of the profession!

Mr. Chairman: So this drew my attention to the Gospel song writer lyrics

“We are a chosen generation
We've been called forth to show His excellence
All I require for life, God has given me
And I know who I am
I know who God says I am
What He says I am
The question to you is who are you?
I am a young man on mission! I am on a mission to stop prostate cancer for being a killer in the Black community. Additionally, I am on a mission to promote and champion the practice of brilliant medicine. For over ten years I have focused my research in making a difference in Ghana and Africa. I am well known globally for the work that I do in fighting prostate cancer in Black men.

Earlier in my career, I was blessed to study the first ever Prostate Cancer Master’s program module organized by Sheffield Hallam University UK and Prostate Cancer UK and be recognized through multiple awards. However, after some time, I realized that it is not about the awards or making the name; it is about changing lives and making a difference. I don’t want to sit in my comfort zone thinking I’m making a difference with the funding, publications and award.

If I affect one person’s life through research, I have achieved my career goal. To make a difference in the world and fulfill what some people refer to “as my calling”, I decided to focus on a disease that affects Black men and that disease is prostate cancer.

It was a no brainer because it was a chance to do meaningful research that will increase their life expectancy and make a difference in their quality of life. I made the decision in 2010 to fight prostate cancer for Black men when after my training as Medical Sonographer from Radford University College, had the opportunity to work with a Medical Doctor who at that time was using herbs to help men with prostate diseases and that for me was the turning point.

At that time, all I knew in the medical sector was conventional and Herbal Medicine. I only got to know of complementary and alternative Medicine in my Master’s program in Prostate cancer at Sheffield Hallam University, UK, when we were introduced to how to improve the quality of life of men with prostate cancer using the therapies. That was the turning point to further study alternative medicine at the PhD level and Holistic Medicine at the Postdoc training level. At the postdoc level, I developed interest in holistic medicine and prostate cancer.

For me, it is a call to action and we really need to accelerate biomedical research in Africa, including clinical trials. We cannot continue to use therapies that were developed and tested for other populations, such as white men, and expect that these therapies will work perfectly well in African men.

However, changing the healthcare system was quite challenging and so I decided to focus my research on patients.

With my research, I realized that: Our Health system is in crisis: Crisis created by some health workers who are not passionate about their profession. Crisis created by the love for money in the health system at the expense of patients’ lives. Crisis created as a result of ignorance from the part of the public on the health system. Crisis created by lack of our health institutions to regulate practitioners! Crisis generated through the conventional or orthodox medical sector, crisis in the alternative and Herbal Medicine sector. The health sector as a whole in the life of the African has some challenges it is facing. Today in Ghana, our airwaves are bombarded with health workers who claimed to be ethnomedical Practitioners but are struggling to pronounce medical terms. ‘Medical Drama’ has filled our media waves! But do you blame them? Each and every one is battling with some health issues and even if not, it is at the starting point.

Mr. Chairman: In 2015, according to the graphic online, about 2.5 million Ghanaians were said to be living with diabetes, with 73 per cent of them unaware or undiagnosed. Majority of these people are between the ages of 15 and 45 years.

Interestingly, The Pulse.com also reported in 2016 that About 4 million Ghanaians are living with diabetes; a report made known by the Ghana Diabetes Association. Recently, according to www.myjoyonlinecom. , Ghana has been ranked sixth among other Africa countries, according to statistics by the World Health Organization (WHO) on diabetes between 2016 and 2017. The report was made known at the commemoration of the 2017 World Diabetes Day at Kyebi in the East Akim Municipality of the Eastern Region. In the report, it is estimated that undiagnosed diabetes accounts for 60 percent of those with the disease in Cameroon, 70 percent in Ghana and over 80 percent in Tanzania.

Is Ethno Medicine the new era of Healthcare?

Mr. Chairman: The Medical Community believes in medical statistics and evidence. Interestingly enough, studies that have been conducted on patients with prostate cancer for instance, have found no evidence that undergoing surgery or chemotherapy is in any way better than an overhaul in lifestyle and diet. One such study, published in the New England Journal of Medicine in 2012, observed men across the US who were diagnosed with localized prostate cancer. The study had enrolled 731 men with localized prostate cancer and randomly assigned them to either undergo radical prostatectomy or maintain observation. The study followed the progress of these men over a period of ten years and came to the conclusion that observation is a better option than undergoing any radical treatment, especially for men with low risk cancer.

Following the study, a statement from the American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) suggested that the risks of harms caused by PSA tests and other unnecessary treatments like biopsies outweigh the benefits. They also suggest appropriate management options should be considered in the event of prostate cancer. This study and statement make it clear that undergoing radical procedures and treatments will not increase your life expectancy but instead lead to uncomfortable side effects and lessen your quality of life.

There is plenty of evidence to suggest that ‘watchful waiting’, changing patient’s diet and seeking alternative, natural cures will produce benefits that far outweigh conventional medical procedures. In fact, statistics show that a high percentage of men diagnosed with prostate cancer ultimately die with it and not from it and as such aggressive treatment is unnecessary.

What is life Expectancy?
Mr. Chairman: Each person responds to treatment differently. No one knows in advance how effective cancer treatment will be. There's also no way to know how long anyone will live—with or without cancer. Survival rates are based on studies of cancer patients during and after treatment. However, some of these studies were done 10 or more years ago, and cancer medications and methods have changed a great deal over the years. The life expectancy for a specific type of cancer is often reported as a five-year survival rate. This doesn't mean that survivors only live five more years. It simply means that the study followed participants for that long. Also, the concern about cancer recurring lessens after five years.

Survival rates are usually stated as percentages. A health care provider might say, “People with this type of cancer generally have a 60 percent five-year survival rate.” This means that 60 out of 100 people who were treated for this type of cancer during the research studies were still living after five years. So let’s look at the percentages of men with prostate cancer.

Statistics about prostate cancer life expectancy:
i. 99% of men diagnosed with the most common types of prostate cancer will survive for more than 5 years

ii. 95% of men diagnosed with prostate cancer will survive for more than 10 years

iii. 76% of men diagnosed with prostate cancer will survive for more than 15 years

Considering most men are around 70 years old when diagnosed with prostate cancer, the above statistics illustrate the benefits of changing their lifestyles and diet rather than rushing to receive unstable medical treatments. In fact, by changing their diet and lifestyle a diagnosis of prostate cancer could have little or no impact on their life expectancy.

This statement means that, if you think that doctors can save you, then the natural healing process is not for you. Cancer survivors often live much longer than these estimates. Every cancer survivor is different. You are not a statistic.

Professor Roger Kirby, one of the world finest prostate surgeon who was afflicted by prostate cancer... It tells you that practicing book or academic medicine is totally different from the reality or going under the knife and it is the patient who practices or experience real medicine if afflicted with illness.

Mr. Chairman:
We need a new approach to healthcare in Africa. We need to train other Medical practitioners outside the field of conventional medicine. This is not a battle we are fighting for but just trying to give the public another alternative on healing. This is just akin to springing up of private media houses providing alternative platform apart from their states Broadcasting Corporation we know.

Mr. Chairman: Today, apart from Hydropower, we are considering Solar for power generation. Interestingly, Traditionalists have developed new strategies to market their services. They are on Facebook sending friend requests. They have moved from their hood in the forest and using different approaches. Today, instead of the normal traditional Universities, open Universities are gradually invading our educational system, Distance learning, online programs and more coming. Every industry has alternative to the previous ways of doing thing! Nobody stays on top of an industry for long! So, all that we are doing here is to introduce a new medical healing into our health system as Medicine has evolved! But this new medical approach should be based on science or evidence. However, science in itself is imperfect. Hence, Conventional Medicine is also imperfect and there are countless of conventional Medical practices that are based on false science but it is still practice because of what is termed as ‘Defensive Medicine’

Mr. Chairman: In 2000, the parliament in Ghana enacted The Traditional Medicine Practice Act 575. The purpose of the Act was to set up a Council to regulate the profession and education of Traditional or ethno medicine. Today, Herbal Medicine is introduced in one of the government Universities. The scope of the mandate of the traditional medicine council as stated in that law is however not clear as to who is a traditional medicine practitioner. There are several operators, such as roaming herbal practitioners with oe without fixed addresses as well as others who operate in identifiable premises, all practicing, diagnosing and healing in this field. Without a clear as to who is a practitioner, it is difficult to regulate these operators.

Mr. Chairman, in 2014 again, a new bill was drafted to seeks to revise the legislation to regulate traditional medicine practice, alternative medicine as well as food supplements. Interestingly, in this new bill alternative medicine was well-defined and separated from traditional or ethnomedicine. In this new bill with alternative medicine in mind define alternative medicine as “ any form of medicine that is outside the mainstream of allopathic and traditional or ethnomedicines and involves the management or treatment of diseases in co-operation with natural forces and the defensive mechanisms of the body. Currently in Ghana, alternative medicine practice is not regulated. Examples of alternative medicine are acupuncture, naturopathy, homeopathy and chiropractic. In accordance with the decision of Ghanaian Government that legislation in the health sector should be fused as appropriate, it has been decided expedient to consolidate traditional or ethno medicine and alternative medicine provisions in one enactment as both relate to practices that are distinct from allopathic medicine. So this new bill establishes the traditional and Alternative Medicine Council. The object of the council is to promote, control and regulate the practice and practitioners of traditional and alternative medicine.

Mr. Chairman, It tells you that, the definition of the traditional or ethnomedicine and Alternative Medicine is also a major challenge which needs to be addressed. For us to be accepted in the medical Community, we have to be able to define who practices traditional and alternative Medicine or we end up confusing the general public.

Traditional or Ethnomedicine is a study or comparison of the traditional medicine practiced by various ethnic groups, and especially by indigenous peoples.

The word ethnomedicine is sometimes used In any case, many forms of 'Eastern' medicine, such as traditional Chinese medicine, are examples of ethnomedicine. This means techniques like herbal therapy, acupressure, and acupuncture are some well-known practical examples of ethnomedicine as well. Another example of ethnomedicine is Ayurvedic medicine as a substitute for traditional medicine.

So Mr. Chairman, these therapies are alternative medicine to us.so therefore, alternative medicines on the other hand is bringing into a place the way of healing of another place (their traditional medicine) to a people, i.e, and the traditional medicine of another country.

So our Traditional Medicine in Africa is also considered as alternative medicine in foreign jurisdiction. This is why Ghana new legislation has clarified the definition.

Alternative medicine is an imported practice into the African system of Healthcare. Interestingly, even herbal medicine varies depending on jurisdiction because the kinetic energy of plants varies and each jurisdiction with its plants. So in the western world; they termed their herbal medicine ‘Western Herbal Medicine’.

Economic Growth and Achieving Universal Goals.

Mr. Chairman: Achieving Universal health coverage is a key health target in the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) that has the means to link equitable social and economic development. As a concept firmly based on equity, it is widely accepted at international and national levels as important for populations to attain ‘health for all’ especially for marginalized groups. However, implementing universal coverage has been tense with challenges and the increasing privatisation of health care provision adds to the challenge because it is being implemented in a health system that rests on a property regime that promotes inequality.

Mr. Chairman, the question, ‘What does an unbiased health system look like?’ rather than the usual ‘How do you make the existing health system more unbiased?’ The focus in the health system lies on conventional Medicine. Besides, Conventional Medical Doctors are well resourced and trained. The Ethnomedical fraternity is faced with challenges, lack of Universities offering Degree programs in Africa compared to abroad and integration of ethnomedicine into the mainstream hospital. We can only achieve this by empowering the Universities to offer such programs in Traditional Medicine to train qualified practitioners.

In the UK about 22 million visits a year are made to practitioners of acupuncture, chiropractic, homoeopathy, hypnotherapy, herbal medicine and osteopathy each year (Thomas et al, 2001; Fox, 2001). This figure excludes therapies such as reflexology, massage, nutritional therapy and therapeutic touch. To put this into perspective, Thomas et al (2001) report that there were 14 million visits to A&E during the same period. Fox (2001) says that more than 90% of visits to complementary practitioners - costing a total of about £450m - are purchased privately. In the USA a total of about $15bn is spent on complementary therapies every year, with about one in four of the population being treated with some form of complementary therapy (Eisenberg et al, 1993)

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HEAD WITCH-HUNTER IN ETHNOMEDICINE
Mr. Chairman: World Health Organization (WHO) has written a document about Traditional Medicine being practiced around the globe for centuries and encourages the integration of these gentle healing methods into more mainstream medicine.

It appears that the medical community has another agenda - to completely eradicate natural medicine as it is financially affecting many medical doctors, or so they think. The pie is big enough for all! If we live in democracy, we also need to respect the patient’s free-will to visit any health professional of their choice, whether it be a natural medicine practitioner, or a medical doctor. It is highly unethical to use scare-tactics on patients. It seems to be OK for medical practitioners to “dabble” in natural medicine without any training because they are medics. However, highly qualified natural medicine practitioners with many years of university education, who may be scientific researchers, authors, clinicians and university professors like me, are all charlatans, along with the universities that awarded these degrees and diplomas says the medical community. Sometimes, I laugh at the medical politics in the field.

Definition of Charlatanism


Mr. Chairman: Perhaps, I throw it to them today to first begin with the definition of Charlatanism - the main foundation of charlatans is that they “con” or “cheat” their patients to satisfy their own interests. Indeed, there are charlatans on both sides of the fence, both the medical community and natural medicine practitioners - this is based on the practitioner’s personality, not their qualifications.

With the organized medical industry of more medical practitioners, charlatanism has reached its peak. Most doctors that belong to the “clique” receive back-handers from medical laboratories for sending patients to them for blood analyses, from pharmaceutical companies for prescribing drugs, from medical centers for referring patients for scans, as well as from colleagues for referring a patient.

The patient gets trapped in this clique of medical professionals who certainly cannot be objective when there are so many monetary rewards for simply signing a piece of paper. So, let’s go back to the definition of “charlatanism” - who is the charlatan now?

The conventional doctor who tries to bleed the patients finances for their self-interests, or the natural medicine practitioner who genuinely cares for his patients and wants them to do well, offering them only what they need for diagnosis and treatment. Also, there are some levels of charlatanism in natural medicine practitioners i.e. selling products with no or little active ingredients to their patients and advertising for conditions they cannot manage! Some cannot even pronounce common medical terms: Posta cancer instead of prostate cancer. Prostrate instead of prostate and a lot more. So if you cannot even pronounce these names how on earth can you treat these conditions?

CHARLATANS" DO NOT KILL PATIENTS!
Mr. Chairman, One thing that can certainly be said about natural medicine is that it certainly does not kill the patient, unlike many of the lethal side-effects of drugs used by modern medicine, not to mention the negative consequences of surgery and radiation. You see, nobody holds monopoly on treatment; likewise, nobody holds monopoly on what triggers diseases. There is also no law, which says, the patient is entitled to only one particular medicine. No medical or natural medicine practitioner is the captain of the ship; only the patient is the captain of the ship, so it is the patient who has right to choose the treatment.

It is incredible when we look at the statistics regarding the diseases and symptoms that are actually caused by medical interventions, mostly drugs. In just the last five years there have been ten times more patients affected by medical interventions than the number of Americans killed in the Vietnam War! This is a statistic that comes straight from the Journal of the American Medical Association after a study of drug side-effects. Interestingly, we have heard lots of medical negligence’s caused in the Ghanaian media lately, from wrong injections, deprivation of oxygen and lots more resulting in death. We have not heard any of this news from the holistic practitioners in Ghana.

DEATH BY MEDICINE - THE STATISTICS!
Mr. Chairman: Something is wrong when regulatory agencies pretend that vitamins are dangerous, yet ignore published statistics showing that government-sanctioned medicine is the real hazard. Until now, no one has ever analyzed and combined ALL of the published literature dealing with injuries and deaths caused by government-protected medicine. That has now changed. A group of researchers carefully reviewed the statistical evidence and their findings are absolutely shocking. These researchers have authored a paper titled Death by Medicine that presents compelling evidence that today’s system frequently causes more harm than good. This fully referenced report shows the number of people in-hospital having adverse reactions to prescribed drugs to be 2.2 million per year. The number of unnecessary antibiotics prescribed annually for viral infections is 20 million per year. The number of unnecessary medical and surgical procedures performed annually is 7.5 million per year. The number of people exposed to unnecessary hospitalization annually is 8.9 million per year. The most stunning statistic, however, is that the total number of deaths caused by conventional medicine is shocking 783,936 per year.

It is now evident that the American medical system is the leading cause of death and injury in the US. (By contrast, the number of deaths attributable to heart disease in 2001 was 699,697, while the number of deaths attributable to cancer was 553,251). Each year approximately 2.2 million US hospital patients experience adverse drug reactions (ADRs) to prescribed medications.

In 1995, Dr. Richard Besser of the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) estimated the number of unnecessary antibiotics prescribed annually for viral infections to be 20 million. In 2003, Dr. Besser spoke in terms of tens of millions of unnecessary antibiotics prescribed annually. Approximately 7.5 million unnecessary medical and surgical procedures are performed annually in the US, while approximately 8.9 million Americans are hospitalized unnecessarily. The estimated total number of deaths induced accidentally by a physician or surgeon or by medical treatment or diagnostic procedures - in the US annually is 783,936.

The Campaign for Truth who conducted a lot of this research (www.campaignfortruth.com) also estimated that over a 10-year period a total of 7.8 million deaths occurred which is more than all the casualties from all the wars fought by the US throughout its entire history. Their projected figures for unnecessary medical events occurring over a 10-year period also are dramatic. These figures show that an estimated 164 million people - more than half of the total US population - receive unneeded medical treatment over the course of a decade.

Is Medicine Working?
Mr. Chairman: This is what they had to say to the question, ‘Is American Medicine Working?’ which could of course extrapolate to medicine practiced all over the globe:

“US health care spending reached $1.6 trillion in 2003, representing 14% of the nation's gross national product. Considering this enormous expenditure, we should have the best medicine in the world. We should be preventing and reversing disease, and doing minimal harm. Careful and objective review, however, shows we are doing the opposite. Because of the extraordinarily narrow, technologically driven context in which modern medicine examines the human condition, we are completely missing the larger picture”.

Medicine is not taking into consideration the following critically important aspects of a healthy human organism:

Stress and how it adversely affects the immune system and life processes

Insufficient exercise
Excessive caloric intake
Highly processed and denatured foods grown in denatured and chemically damaged soil

Exposure to tens of thousands of environmental toxins instead of minimizing these disease-causing factors, rather, we cause more illness through medical technology, diagnostic testing, overuse of medical and surgical procedures, and overuse of pharmaceutical drugs.

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The huge disservice of this therapeutic strategy is the result of little effort or money being spent on preventing disease.

They go on to conclude:
“We are fully aware of what stands in the way of change: powerful pharmaceutical and medical technology companies, along with other powerful groups with enormous vested interests in the business of medicine. They fund medical research, support medical schools and hospitals, and advertise in medical journals. With deep pockets, they entice scientists and academics to support their efforts. Such funding can sway the balance of opinion from professional caution to uncritical acceptance of new therapies and drugs. You have only to look at the people who make up the hospital, medical, and government health advisory boards to see conflicts of interest. The public is mostly unaware of these interlocking interests.”

For example, a 2003 study found that nearly half of medical school faculties who serve on institutional review boards (IRB) to advise on clinical trial research also serve as consultants to the pharmaceutical industry. The study authors were concerned that such representation could cause potential conflicts of interest.

A news release by Dr. Erik Campbell, the lead author, said, "Our previous research with faculty has shown us that ties to industry can affect scientific behavior, leading to such things as trade secrecy and delays in publishing research. It's possible that similar relationships with companies could affect IRB members' activities and attitudes.”

MEDICAL ERRORS - A GLOBAL ISSUE
Mr. Chairman: A five-country survey published in the Journal of Health Affairs found that 18-28% of people who were recently ill had suffered from a medical or drug error in the previous two years. The study surveyed 750 recently ill adults.

The breakdown with regards to some countries showed the percentages of those suffering a medical or drug error. These were as follows: 18% in Britain, 23% in Australia and in New Zealand, 25% in Canada and 28% in the US.

In 1995, a JAMA report noted,
"Over a million patients are injured in US hospitals each year, and approximately 280,000 die annually as a result of these injuries. Therefore, the iatrogenic death rate dwarfs the annual automobile accident mortality rate of 45,000 and accounts for more deaths than all other accidents combined."

At a 1997 press conference, Leape released a nationwide poll on patient iatrogenic conducted by the National Patient Safety Foundation (NPSF), which is sponsored by the American Medical Association (AMA).

The survey found that more than 100 million Americans have been affected directly or indirectly by a medical mistake. Forty-two percent were affected directly and 84% personally knew of someone who had experienced a medical mistake.

MORTALITY RATES DROP WHEN DOCTORS GO ON STRIKE!

Mr. Chairman: It is interesting to see what happened in Israel in the year 2000 when Industrial action by public health doctors helped to reduce the death rates in most of the country.

A large number of doctors across the country went on strike for 127 days while funeral directors complained of less work. To find out whether the industrial action was affecting deaths in the country, the Jerusalem Post interviewed non-profit making Jewish burial societies, which perform funerals for the vast majority of Israelis. Hananya Shahor, the veteran director of Jerusalems Kehilat Yerushalayim burial society said,

"The number of funerals we have performed has fallen drastically." Meir Adler, manager of the Shamgar Funeral Parlour, which buries most other residents of Jerusalem, declared with much more certainty:

"There definitely is a connection between the doctors’ sanctions and fewer deaths. We saw the same thing in 1983 when the Israel Medical Association applied sanctions for four and a half months."

Interesting!
MEDICAL BRAINWASHING
Mr. Chairman: When one discusses issues with medical practitioners there is definitely a ‘brainwashing’ that does not correlate with the scientific literature or even their own personal experiences working with their patients. They literally believe that if everyone in the world only had enough drugs in their bodies, we'd all be super healthy!

If we just had enough vaccines and enough cholesterol drugs for all the senior citizens, and enough antidepressants for all the middle-aged people, we'd all be healthier, they claim.

And the way to get more people healthier is;
To push more drug ads
To mandate more vaccinations
PROFIT - MONEY AND MORE MONEY!
Mr. Chairman: Yes, it is insane but it is also the reality that we are living today.

Modern medicine is run by big pharmaceutical companies whose interest is in making money from patenting expensive drugs - there is no primary interest in curing people of difficult health problems. The problem is that they also brain-wash medical doctors to believing that these “magic drugs” can solve all the health problems of the world. Wrong again! If this was the case, then why are the rates of cancer, diabetes, heart disease, arthritis and many other health problems increasing? Surely, if drugs could solve all these degenerative diseases, then they would have been eradicated by now!

Dr. Guylaine Lanctot, M.D. who wrote The Medical Mafia has this to say: "The medical establishment works closely with the drug multinationals whose main objective is profits, and whose worst nightmare would be an epidemic of good health. Lots of drugs MUST be sold. In order to achieve this, anything goes: lies, fraud, and kickbacks. Doctors are the principal salespeople of the drug companies. They are rewarded with research grants, gifts, and lavish perks. The principal buyers are the public - from infants to the elderly - who MUST be thoroughly medicated and vaccinated...at any cost!

Why do the authorities forbid Ethnomedicine?

Mr. Chairman: Because they are serving the industry, and the industry cannot make money with herbs, vitamins, and homeopathy. They cannot patent natural remedies. That is why they push synthetics. They control medicine, and that is why they are able to tell medical schools what they can and cannot teach. They have their own sets of laws, and they force people into them. That is a mafia. This sensational expose' also uncovers the truth behind vaccines, AIDS, cancer, the World Health Organization, the Rockefeller Foundation, the World Bank, and more."

But we all know that modern medicine practices “symptom suppression” by using drugs, with few exceptions. If you have arthritis, your arthritis is not cured by a medical doctor, it is simply treated using an anti-inflammatory and a pain killer, but it never goes away. Interestingly, an old woman over 100yrs at Aflao is still on hypertensive medicine with no monitoring and was disheartened to see her case!

When you have diabetes, the doctor does not cure the problem, but simply manages it with drugs which you have to take for the rest of your life - or so that is the message that you get when the doctor prescribes.

MEDICAL DOCTORS IN THE DARK!
Mr. Chairman: One of the things that medical doctors do not really examine is the myriad of contributing factors that are playing a role on the patient’s life. They seem to feel that people are not affected from the food they eat, the water they drink, the air they breathe, the large number of chemicals that are placed in the body from cosmetics, preservatives, E-factors, colorings and much more. Not to mention the mercury that is placed in a person’s mouth when placing amalgam fillings.

Stress from work, family issues, relationships and shock also do not seem to be part of the health equation. Not to mention the various nutritional deficiencies that most people have these days - how is it possible for the body to produce enzymes, hormones, remove toxins etc. when they are deficient in the raw materials required to make these substances.

All this is “quackery” to most physicians - but this is what natural medicine practitioners practice - they try to identify and remove these factors, while using natural substances to help the body regenerates and rebuild. There is a lot of science to support what they are doing and why and how natural remedies work effectively.

In fact, there are universities all over the world, as well as Associations that not only accept natural medicine but also award degrees (even doctorates) in the fields of nutritional and herbal medicine, homeopathy, environmental sciences and toxicology, psychosomatic medicine, psycho-neuroimmunology - there are hundreds of thousands of scientific publications available on all these topics.

Mr. Chairman: So who is practicing ‘quackery’ now!

WHY ARE DOCTORS IN THE DARK?
One may ask why do all these medical doctors not read all this material and practice at least some aspects of this science to help their patients heal better. I have written science based articles and published journal papers on natural medicine. Today, hundreds of scientific literatures support hibiscus sabdariffa for hypertension, thousands of literatures supports pawpaw better than chemotherapy but would they prescribe it?

Even if they spent a little time balancing their patients nutritional habits, and getting them to drink water - about 60% of the population suffer from the symptoms of chronic dehydration, then the patient would thank them for it.

Instead, a health practitioner such as myself and others who thinks ‘outside the box’ gets chastised, criticized, threatened and generally ‘blacklisted’ and called a charlatan and a quack. Yet we have probably helped more people heal with headaches, migraines, arthritis, high blood pressure, diabetes, cancers and a myriad of other symptoms simply by fixing their dehydration and balancing their diet and teaching them the art of detoxification to help their body heal.

Doctors are not kept in the dark because there are differences over medical theory, i.e. that one side believes in the "germ theory" of disease and the other side believes in the "nutritional theory" of disease. Or perhaps you think that orthodox medicine is interested in treating "symptoms," while alternative medicine is interested in treating "causes."

While there are theoretical differences, the war is not caused by differences in medical theory. The war is all about profits. "We are not dealing with a scientific problem. We are dealing with a political issue."

Conventional treatment for cancer is failing because cancer is a very smart disease with proteins covering them. You need to decode this protein from them! Medicine itself is an imperfect science and until we move from text book medicines and practice evidence-based medicine we will have lots of challenges in winning the war on cancers. No diagnostic text is 100% accurate. Paulla Hammond in the new superweapon in the fight against cancers:

“We can think of these very aggressive forms of cancer as kind of supervillains in a comic book. They're clever, they're adaptable, and they're very good at staying alive. And, like most supervillains these days, their superpowers come from a genetic mutation. The genes that are modified inside these tumor cells can enable and encode for new and unimagined modes of survival, allowing the cancer cell to live through even our best chemotherapy treatments.

One example is a trick in which a gene allows a cell, even as the drug approaches the cell, to push the drug out, before the drug can have any effect. Imagine -- the cell effectively spits out the drug. This is just one example of the many genetic tricks in the bag of our supervillain, cancer. This is all due to mutant genes. So, we have a supervillain with incredible superpowers. And we need a new and powerful mode of attack! But how do we carry that out? Using integrative approach, we can actually design a superweapon that can travel through the bloodstream. It has to be friendly enough to get through the bloodstream, it's got to be holistic enough to penetrate the tumor tissue, and it's got to be nature enough to be taken up inside the cancer cell. To do this job well, it has to be an integrative approach. But there is one bigger obstacle we have to think about. In fact, it may be the biggest obstacle of all. How do we deploy this superweapon? I mean, every good weapon needs to be targeted; we have to target this superweapon to the supervillain cells that reside in the tumor.

But our bodies have a natural immune-defense system: cells that reside in the bloodstream and pick out things that don't belong, so that it can destroy or eliminate them. And guess what? Conventional treatment is considered a foreign object to the body. We have to sneak conventional treatment past the tumor defense system. We have to get it passed this mechanism of getting rid of the foreign object by disguising it or integrating the treatment regime. Prostate cancer strikes a special chord with me. It is a very aggressive cancer in black men, in part because it's discovered at very late stages, when it's highly advanced and there are a number of genetic mutations. After conventional treatment, this cancer comes back for 75 percent of patients. And it usually comes back in a drug-resistant form. High-grade prostate cancer is one of the biggest supervillains out there. And we're now directing our superweapon toward its defeat. Another barrier is that; some of these cancer groups fighting cancer are even more ‘cancerous’ than the disease they claimed to fight. A case study was in 2017, I led a team of cancer groups to see the first lady: Rebecca Akufo Addo, immediately we came back they started fighting amongst themselves because the first lady has accepted to front the campaign against cancer.

As a researcher, I usually don't get to work with patients. But I recently met a man who is trying to survive prostate cancer. I was deeply inspired by the optimism and strength that both Dad and daughter displayed and by their story of courage and support. At this event, we spoke about the different technologies directed at cancer. And he was in tears as he explained how learning about these efforts gives him hope for future generations, including her daughter. This really touched me. It's not just about building really elegant science. It's about changing people's lives. It's about understanding the power of integrative medicine on the scale of molecules.

Every person has cancer cells in the body. These cancer cells do not show up in the standard tests until they have multiplied to a few billion. When doctors tell cancer patients that there are no more cancer cells in their bodies after treatment, it just means the tests are unable to detect the cancer cells because they have not reached the visible size. Conventional Medicine is like a man trying to penetrate a virgin for the first time; the woman feels the pain; that is the side effect because the vagina is trying to adjust to the penis for the first time though it is going to bring enjoyment. It comes with challenges; but Holistic medicine is like a man trying to penetrate a tertiary virgin; the vagina is already prepared to accept it because it is a friendly environment and is used to it. This is the simple principle; the body is used to natural things not synthetic! I have written several articles but I realized that, the ordinary men on the street do not get access to them. Even the learned ones are only interested in preventive medicine.

Dr Samuel Epstein, M.D.
The fact of the matter is that this war is a political war. Like all other wars in world history, it is all about money, power and the glory of the world. Most of all it is a war about orthodox medicine maintaining the power they have had since the 1920s. Our government agencies and the corporations that control them have done everything in their power to make sure you do not know the truth about alternative medicine, and especially alternative treatments for cancer and alternative prevention measures for heart disease. And the television stations and other media are not saying anything negative about one of their biggest advertisers - the pharmaceutical industry.

So called "investigative journalists" are never going to investigate the friends of their employer. "Why does a particular story not receive the coverage it deserves in the media? While a variety of reasons may be at cause, foremost among them... seems to be conflict of interest issues involving the financial concerns of major media advertisers."

Mr. Chairman: Peter Phillips, in his book, Censored 1997

Before saying more about this war, it is instructive to go back to the beginning, to see why this war started in the first place.

THE MEDICAL INDUSTRY
The stagnation of progress in treating chronic diseases continues today because the massively profitable procedures of surgery, drugs and radiation make many, many billions of dollars every year for,

The pharmaceutical industry
The chemical industry
The petroleum industry
Medical doctors
Hospitals
Medical equipment makers
T.V. stations (through the advertising of the pharmaceutical companies)

Radio stations
Major magazines
...etc. etc.
"Drug therapy is an incredibly lucrative business for doctors, hospitals, and pharmaceutical companies… The medical establishment wants everyone to follow the same exact protocol. They don’t want to see the drug industry go under, and that’s the number one obstacle to any progress in oncology (or treating other degenerative diseases)."

Dr Warner, M.D.
In other words, the medical community has gone along with the idea that chemotherapy, radiation and surgery are so profitable, that there will never be any progress in the "war against degenerative diseases." The leaders have intentionally, willingly, knowingly and pro-actively suppressed every possible advance in treating chronic diseases for over 80 years, dating back to the 1920s

WHERE’S THE SCIENTIFIC EVIDENCE?
I hear many doctors talking about how ‘their’ science is evidence-based, while natural medicine is not. "Where's the evidence that nutrition has any value?" they ask, as if drug companies would suddenly fund randomized, double-blind placebo-controlled studies on vitamins and minerals that can't be patented. Yet, when one examines a lot of the ‘scientific’ publications of the medical profession, of which about 90% are pharmacological in nature (yes, you guessed correctly, they are financed by Big Pharma). You will find most of these studies being weak methodologically as well as being based on fraudulent science, designed specifically to achieve a statistical "success" using any means necessary: dodging the numbers, removing samples that don't fit the desired curve, burying trials that showed negative results, confusing correlation with causation and a hundred other devious tricks.

The medical journals themselves, in turn, are financially supported by drug company ads, and they continue to publish studies secretly authored by the drug companies themselves (while utterly failing to disclose blatant conflicts of interest).

Natural health is a huge threat to conventional medicine.

If the African and global public learned the truth about nutrition, herbs, homeopathy, sunlight, acupuncture, superfoods, and other naturopathic modalities, they would drop their drugs in a minute and pursue the safe, natural and non-patented therapies from the world of natural health. And that's precisely what Big Pharma is paranoid about - they simply cannot allow this to happen! So drug companies continue their campaigns of influence, corruption, buying off the mainstream media and controlling the curricula at medical schools. The future of health is in prevention - not in drug therapies or unjustified surgical procedures with all their iatrogenic effects. There is much that people can learn about how to prevent, Cancer, Diabetes, Heart disease, Depression, Kidney stones, Osteoporosis and thousands of other health conditions to which conventional medicine has no cure.

Disease prevention or sustainable wellness is the new paradigm shift that the world has to embrace in order to really optimize health, remove iatrogenic diseases but at the same time dispel the large medical industry fueled by the pharmaceutical giants.

Preventing disease is the fastest way to bankrupt Big Pharma!

Conclusion:
Mr. Chairman: on this wonderful occasion, Africa once again has a date with destiny and the decision we make will determine whether our lives become better or worse; the decision to a large extent will determine whether our lives improves.

The decision we make will determine how fast we are able to catch up and compete with the health system in the global world. Will Africa begin tackling the very basic health issues that confront our people? All these questions will be dependent on the choice we make.

You have listened, be the judge – if you have a health challenge now; what would you do? What would be your advice to the health Ministry in streamlining the health sector? What would be your advice to the Ministry of Health in regulating the Profession?

Comrades, it is time for change. From the most famous texts of Ayurvedic medicine, “The poor, those suffering from disease and those afflicted by sorrow should be helped. Even insects and ants should be treated with compassion, just as one's own self”. This is the guiding spirit of ethnomedicine. Let this be the guiding spirit for all of us. I end my lecture with this personal philosophy in life. “The future you picture is the future you will feature, the ‘YOU’ you see is the ‘YOU’ you will become. Therefore picture a great future to feature and desire a great ‘YOU’ to become and the almighty God will see to it that you have featured in the future you have pictured and have become the YOU, you have desired.

Thank you for your attention.
GOD BLESS YOU and GOD BLESS NIGERIA AND AFRICA HEALTHCARE

By Dr. Raphael Nyarkotey Obu: PhD, Postdoc, Mini-MBA

Raphael Nyarkotey Obu
Raphael Nyarkotey Obu

Dr. Raphael Nyarkotey Obu is a Research Professor of Prostate Cancer and Alternative Medicine –Da Vinci College of Holistic Medicine, Larnaca City, Cyprus. He is the president of Nyarkotey College of Holistic Medicine at Tema, Com 7 Post Office, affiliated to Da Vinci College in Cyprus and the

Disclaimer: "The views/contents expressed in this article are the sole responsibility of Raphael Nyarkotey Obu and do not neccessarily reflect those of Modern Ghana. Modern Ghana will not be responsible or liable for any inaccurate or incorrect statements contained in this article."

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