As LSTMB trains herbal exhibitors, advertisers
By Sola Ogundipe
Traditional medicine practitioners in Lagos State have been called upon to ensure better documentation and measurement of their medicine just like their counterparts in orthodox medicine.
The Secretary to the Lagos State Government, SSG, Mrs. Folasade Jaji who made the call weekend, cautioned the practitioners against abuse and arbitrary use of indigenous medications.
Jaji, who acknowledged efforts of the originators of indigenous medications for the treatment of ailments like malaria, cold, cough, diabetes, and High Blood Pressure among others, said it should be taken a step further to design methods for measurement as well as the documentation in the interest of posterity.
Speaking at the opening session of training organised for traditional medicine exhibitors and advertisers, she said: “The emphasis here is that more effort should be put into proper documentation and measurement of just like the orthodox medicine.
“Specific dosage and prescriptions as given by orthodox doctors should also be embraced by traditional medicine practitioners.
“It is my belief that if our local herbs are properly packaged, they can be exported to other countries and would serve as a source of additional income for the nation.”
Further, she avowed that the advantage of formal education on the part of the 21st-century traditional medicine practitioners should be on how to further add value to the practice and increase the relevance as well as the potency of traditional medicine.
According to Jaji, most Nigerians and Africans in general turned to traditional remedies during the outbreak of COVID-19, which is an attestation to the level of awareness of the potency of indigenous medicine among the populace. She, however, called for continuous awareness on the effectiveness of traditional herbs as well as training of the practitioners. This, she said, is the only way Nigeria can begin to compare itself with countries like China and India who take pride in their roots and herbs.
The Chairman of the Lagos State Traditional Medicine Board, LSTMB, Prof Adebukunola Adefule-Ositelu, called for better collaboration between traditional medicine practitioners and their orthodox counterpart, stressing that both practitioners are working for the wellbeing of citizens.
Adefule-Ositelu called for more research works from traditional medicine researchers as a way of further promoting and manufacturing medicinal products that are cost-effective, less invasive, and of the high standard that can meet the standards for export purposes.
She advocated for an end to the limiting colonial mentality that condemns and sees all-natural medicine practitioners as fetish and or inferior to those of non-pigmented-skinned people of the western world.
Speaking on the essence of the training organised for the herbal exhibitors and advertisers, she disclosed that the Board Chair identified continuous training as one of the ways to restore professionalism to traditional medicine.
In her views, it was extremely important to impart the practitioners with requisite knowledge on how to handle health issues brought to them, while also emphasising that each of the practitioners has been told to know where their expertise ends and when to make a referral to their orthodox counterpart where and when necessary.
On the occasion which also coincided with the 40 years of establishment of Lagos State Traditional Medicine Board to seek improved synergy with all its stakeholders, saying that traditional medicine deserves better recognition than its present state.