Call to regulate traditional healers

2010-07-29 00:00

THERE is an urgent need for the incorporation of traditional healers into the national health delivery system as patients use both traditional healers and biomedical personnel’s services out of a need for the best healing therapy.

This was said by Dr Andre le Roux-Kemp of the department of criminal justice and procedure at the University of the Western Cape during her presentation on the legal perspective of African traditional medicine in the context of HIV and Aids.

Dr Kemp was making a presentation to the four-day national traditional medicine conference, which started yesterday at Durban’s International Convention Centre.

The conference was organised by the University of KwaZulu-Natal in partnership with the KZN government and the South African National Aids Council.

The purpose of the conference is to create a forum where potential contributions of traditional medicine in the fight against HIV and Aids can be assessed.

It is also to share lessons from practitioners who have made advances in integrating traditional medicine into HIV and Aids treatments.

Le Roux-Kemp said, “In South Africa we had total ignorance when it comes to traditional medicine.

“This ignorance stems from the government’s total lack of interest in expanding healing measures until the late 1990s.

“With patients visiting both Western and traditional health practitioners, there is a need for traditional healers to be regulated and that calls for government to be part of the process.”

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