WHO Global report

9th August 2019

The World Health Organisation (WHO) Global report on traditional, complementary and integrative medicine (T&CM) was published in May (data is from 2018). This report includes contributions from 179 WHO Member States, and provides valuable information for policymakers, health professionals and the public. It is the first WHO global report to cover products, practices and practitioners. Key findings were:

  • There was a consistent increase in the number of WHO Member States having a national policy on T&CM. More than 50% of the 194 Member States had a national policy on T&CM.
  • 55% of all Member States reported the presence of a national office for T&CM.
  • Almost 40% reported the presence of a national research institute for T&CM.
  • 64% reported laws or regulations for herbal medicines.
  • Acupuncture was the most common form of practice (reported by 113 Member States), closely followed by herbal medicines (110) and indigenous TM (109). 
  • The most commonly cited difficulties with regard to regulatory issues related to the practice of T&CM were lack of research data; lack of financial support for research; and lack of safety monitoring mechanisms.

The report concluded that T&CM can make a significant contribution to the goal of universal health coverage. The WHO’s current focus is to develop norms, standards and technical documents and to take the leadership to support Member States in providing safe, qualified and effective T&CM services and their appropriate integration into health systems for achieving universal health coverage and the Sustainable Development Goals.

Read the full report here: https://www.who.int/traditional-complementary-integrative-medicine/en/

Original source: Research Council for Complementary Medicine newsletter 9/8/19

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