Quick Links to Global News in Traditional, Alternative, and Integrative Health and Medicine for April 2015

quick linksThis monthly Global Integrator features highlights on developments in traditional medicine and alternative and integrative health during a 1-month period. Here are 75 short selections. Some significant themes and stories: a Native American owned integrative cancer center in the Pacific Northwest; the first ever Chinese government 5-year plan for traditional medicines; a useful herbal tea concoction for malaria; new use of a 400 year old Materia Medica; and a SouthAfrican situation regarding whether corporations must respect sick leave when papers are signed by traditional healers. What a pot pourri!

  • This article in India Daily Mail looks at the challenges to boosting integrative approaches despite the new Department of AYUSH.
  • The British government is spending an estimated $214,000 on homeopathic treatments in the Bristol area.
  • A natural medicine of Papua named sarangsemut promoted by Victoria Op is featured. A public health officer states: “Flavonoids act as antioxidants that are believed to neutralize free radicals in the human body,” Fanny said. “In addition, this compound acts as an anti-viral agent that can be used to fight viruses, including the herpes virus and HIV/AIDS.”
  • The story looks at issues for traditional medicines in Malaysia’s implementation of a new Goods and Services Tax. Another article here contextualizes this in a broader outcry against the tax, which went into effect April 1.
  • In Thailand, the National Reform Council’s committee on public health reform has taken a strong position that traditional Thai medicine “has been playing an important role for both the modern medicine and the local society.” They call for a reform of the traditional medicines sector.
  • The discussed MOU between Mauritius and India on traditional medicine has been signed by PrimeMinister Shri Narendra Modi.
  • The London Daily Mail pictorial focuses on the medicinal trade in endangered species.
  • THE Muhimbili National Hospital (MNH) inTanzania and the government of China, via the China Academy of Chinese Medical Sciences, signed an accord on “traditional medicine treatment related to surgery-bound diseases.” The original partnership began in 1987. Another focus is HIV-AIDs where the co-signers say TCM has proveduseful.
  • David Reilly, MDThe Weill Cornell Medical College of Qatarhosted a session on integrative care with speakers from around the globe. Scotland-based integrative physician and homeopath David Reilly, MD (pictured) was among speakers at the daylong session with speakers from around the globe. The symposium, also covered here, was entitled “Integrative Medicine: A Refreshing Approach to OptimalHealth.”
  • The impact of the diminution of biodiversity in Asia on medical discovery is the focus of this piece in Asian Scientist.The article reports that “natural products account for more than one-third ofthe approved drugs in the market, making up 39 percent of the total drugs approved between 1983 and 1994 in 33 different disease areas.” Two networks devoted to preservation for medicinal and other purposes are noted.
  • This strong Al Jazeera report examines impact of deforestation on traditional medicines and traditional ways of the OrangAsli indigenous peoples of Malaysia.
  • Shanghai was the site of a “wellness summit” promoted by a business called Sprout Lifestyle.
  • The second World Homeopathy Summit was held April 11-12 in Mumbai. The first was inBarcelona in 2013. Promoters anticipated 1000 plus attendees
  • An “Expat Corner” in Turkey offers a sample of traditional remedies.
  • A skeptical view of the growing number of herbshops is offered in this Saudi Gazette article.
  • The University of Arizona Confucius Institute and the Mel and Enid Zuckerman College of Public Health presented Chinese Health Day 2015 on April 4 as a means of spreading the word about Chinese health methods.
  • Ayurveda advocates are lauding a report from India’s premier medical institution, AIIMS that found Ayurvedic formulations effective in treating rheumatoid arthritis. AIIMS department ofpharmacology director described AIIMS work thusly: “Interest intraditional medicines is renewed and growing exponentially due to the adverse drug reactions and economic burden associated with modern system of medicine.The central government is promoting them too.”
  • The place of traditional medicine, one of seven divisions in Myanmar’s Department of Health, is not specified in this article on a restructuring.
  • In Jaipur, India, a government agency ismulling the potential value of “electroherbal therapy.”
  • This link looks at research that purportedly shows an ancient Anglo-Saxon remedy as valuable against MRSA.
  • Article fromTanzania speaks to why locals are using traditional medicine.
  • This article from the newsletter of the National Resources Defense Council speaks to the challenges to vultures (pictured) and other wildlife from traditional African medicine practices.
  • At the 5th meeting of health ministers of the South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation a resolution was passed that affirmed the importance oftraditional medicine in addressing non-communicable diseases.
  • This article,the last in 6 from China Daily focuses on the success of Tang Ren Tang becoming a global TCM company. The firm has 2000 stores, 110 of them abroad.
  • This post celebrating World Health Day focuses on “19 Bizarrely Effective Home Remedies” from around the world.
  • A central Angolan traditional medicines association is seeking to register practitioners with an eye to standardizing consultation prices.
  • A 10-bed hospital is the first in this Indian state of Nagaland under the new AYUSH department. The article speaks to the challenges in spreading the AYUSH system. Another related article here.
  • The Puyallup tribe’s integrative cancer center, Salish Integrative Oncology Care Center,with its naturopathic and tribal care, is here.
  • Canada’s Ontario province has taken a step to regulate homeopaths.
  • A major modernization of a licensing law and expansion of practice rights for naturopathic doctors in Canada’s Saskatchewan province is the subject here.
  • This column both speaks to and promotes the growth of “integrative medicine” in Kerala, India.
  • This oralpiece documents the work of the Tibetan Medicine College to create a resource of all important Tibetan medical texts.
  • This article looks at the emerging supplement industry in Zimbabwe.
  • An Ndola, Zambia-based herbalist claims cervical cancer cures via his herbs and calls for government research.
  • A Nigerianpractitioner of herbalism with a company calls on the government to engage more research and provide lower-interestloans to promote business expansion.
  • Materia medicaA 400 year-old German Materia Medica (pictured) is the subject of exploration for potential modern medical value
  • The finding of an ancient Venetian remedy potentially having value for Ebola treatment stimulated this re-think of “historical medicine.”
  • In Thiruvananthapuram, Union Health and Family Welfare Minister J P Nadda says a new center will “take all initiatives to bring Ayurvedic medicines to the mainstream of medical treatment.”
  • The article describes how the Kerala State Industrial Development Corporation (KSIDC) “has initiated steps to forge acommon platform for promoting ayurveda worldwide.”
  • This report from a study in NewZealand finds herbalists and naturopaths in support of greater integrationwith regular practice.
  • A natural pharma company in Vietnam has opened a traditional medicine museum.
  • The Karnataka government in India has appointedan exclusive controller for AYUSH. The move separates AYUSH from conventional drug regulations.
  • A conference in Botswana involving 32 nations explored demand-sideways to stop the market for animal parts for medicine.
  • This is a look at the growth of an Indonesian pharma firm that includes traditional medicine.
  • The Chinese government has issued a plan forprotection and advancement of traditional medicine materials – a first such national initiative – for the 2015-2020 period. The short Xinhuanotice is here.
  • A new MOU in India between Jamia Millia Islamiaand the Central Council for Research in Unani Medicine (CCRUM) will establish the HakimAjmal Khan Institute to foster study of these methods.
  • Data on the numbers and locations of varioustypes of AYUSH practitioners in India are in this article. There are presently, for instance, “3,601 AYUSH hospitals,including 2,827 Ayurvedic, 252 Unani, 264 Siddha and 216 Homeopathic operating across the country.”
  • A new statement by the judge in the case of the Canadian aboriginal child appears to reverse his previous view. A perspective on the importance of integrative traditional and modern methods is in this GlobeMail commentary.
  • PaxherbalsThis article speaks to the growth of Paxherbals (pictured), a company begun by a Catholic clergyman, as a regulated herb company in Nigeria. A piece touching on the company’s example was written by this investigator from London’s Africa Research Institute.
  • The provider of a major US Integrative Healthcare Symposium, Diversified Communications, is beginning a similar event inCanada in October 2015.
  • Two traditional medicine hospitals were on the list of Vietnamese institutions that have poorwaste treatment.
  • The Hamad Medical Corporation in Qatar announcesa plan to slowly bring in “alternative” treatment in its announced expansion of pain treatment facilities.
  • This significant piece in The Hindu questions the evidence and whether India should be backing both homeopathy and Ayurveda in its AYUSH ministry.
  • A new proprietary report on medical tourism in South Korea includes a breakdown on the numbers that journeyed for Traditional Korean Medicine.
  • A newmuseum on Ayurvedic medicine is opening in Sri Lanka.
  • MedPageToday offers a somewhat balanced two-perspective view following the FDA hearings on homeopathy.
  • A conference on corporate social responsibility in China in establishing sustainable TCM practices is reported here.
  • In a training session in Ghana, the administrator of the Traditional Medicine Practice Control, said the council is intensifying education “to crack the whip severely on practitioners who flout the laws” with over claims.
  • A new Paraguayan law under consideration will set a National Office of Indigenous Health for the 2% of indigenous peoples and their traditional practices.
  • An herbal tea combination including cochlospermumplanchonii (pictured) has scientific basis for its use in Burkina Faso and perhaps elsewhere in West Africa as an anti-malarialagent.
  • This legal view from South Africa asked whether corporations must accept sick leave if diagnosed by a traditional healer – with an interesting and culturally sensitive twist.
  • Challenges of the national Nigerian FDA in gaining trust of traditional medicine companies are noted in this argument that the country could benefit from more use of traditional practices.
  • A new industry collaboration is anticipated to bring more TCM products to Europe.
  •  Kottakkal Arya Vaidya Sala may soon become a collaborating center of collaboration for the World Health Organizationaccording to this presentation.
  • The blog is a goodreview of testimony before the US FDA in two days of hearings on regulation of homeopathy. The CNN report is here.
  • This article focuses on the timeliness of a book on medicinal plants of Barbados.
  • In Ghana, the Institute of Industrial Research (IIR) of the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) have apublic private partnership with Bio Resources International Ghana Limited withfunding from the Export Development and Agricultural Investment Fund to explore ingredients in traditional medicines.
  • An Iranian delegation to Tajikistan is promoting exchange in modern and traditional medicine.
  • This NewStraights Times article speaks to the new Malaysian regulations oftraditional healers from an antagonistic perspective toward “charlatans and faith healers”.
  • This Jakarta Post article opens with notice that “the Mentawai Islands regency health agency in West Sumatrawill use traditional medicinal plants commonly used by sikerei (traditional healers) in the region to accompany modern medicines in Puskesmas“ (community health centers). Research in 2012 found 151 different medicinal plants and identified 135 plant taxonomy types used in 79 medicinal potions.“
  • Health minister Datuk Seri S. Subramaniam In this article, health minister Datuk Seri S.Subramaniam (pictured) suggests that the slow registration of long time traditional healers is holding up implementation of a 2013 registration act in Malaysia. This related piece says traditional practices are already in 17 hospitals and the registration could include 15,000 practitioners.
  • Medical leaders meeting April 16, 2015 inKarachi, Pakistan argued for some integrated/integrativemedicine curriculum in all medical education as a source of health reform.
  • This article is an exit interview from Warwick Anderson, MD, the past CEO for 10 years of the Australian National Health and Medical Research Council that released the recent report lambasting homeopathy. He focuses the last of his challenges on non-conventional practice.
  • The Korean population is spending over $2.2-billion a year on traditional medicine and at rates that are growing at 7.7% ayear. The writer speculates that widespread use of acupuncture may explain why Korean rates of opiate use are well below the WHO recommended levels. Still, such practices account for only 4% of spending.
  • ·Here is an interview with Ottawa naturopathic doctor Dugald Seely, ND who just received a $3-million grant to explore naturopathic integrative oncology.

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