The World Health organisation has urged governments to strengthen collaboration between institutions of technology and innovation, traditional health practitioners, and the private sector.
This is because approximately 80% of the African population relies on traditional medicine to meet their basic health needs.
This will help to speed up research and development as well as local manufacturing of traditional medicine-based therapeutics for the continent’s health and well-being.
More than forty African nations, compared to only eight in 2000, will have national traditional medicine policies in place by 2022.
Traditional medicines are vital because they rely on natural ingredients.
This practice has evolved into a well-regulated medical system over hundreds of years.
Traditional medicine is now regarded as a reliable, acceptable, cost-effective, and easily accessible source of health care for African populations.
Traditional medicine has aided in the development of traditional medicine-based therapeutics for priority diseases such as HIV/AIDS, malaria, diabetes, hypertension, sickle cell disease, and now covid-19.
This year’s theme of the African traditional medicine day is “two decades of African traditional medicine day, progress towards achieving universal health coverage in Africa”.
The World Health Organization is currently funding joint missions with partners to some African countries, such as Nigeria, to monitor clinical trials of traditional medicine-based therapeutics proposed for covid-19.