Chief Scientist of the World Health Organization Dr. Soumya Swaminathan on Thursday stated that traditional medicine systems play an important role in promoting well-being and good healthcare. She noted that the research in this sector must be agile and receptive to varying necessities.
According to reports in The Indian Express, Dr Swaminathan shared her insights during the Global Ayush Investment and Innovation Summit in Gandhinagar. Giving an example of her tenure as Director-General of the Indian Council of Medical Research, she said, “We had set up a good relationship with the Ayush Ministry to undertake clinical trials for the treatment of dengue.” She then discussed the importance of “multi-institutional research” and collaborations with academia and health systems.
The scientist also stressed the importance of promoting good research in the biotech and industrial sectors so that it can be translated into public health initiatives. “Five pillars that we need to build on our resources, data, collaborations, well-defined methodologies, and policy supporting innovation and entrepreneurship,” she encouraged, per The Indian Express.
According to the scientist, it will be critical to consider creative trial designs for research studies, citing acupuncture as an example of how dedicated research can lead to the adoption of traditional medicine techniques.
According to Ayush head Dr. Bhushan Patwardhan, combining traditional medicines with modern science can pave the way for better healthcare.
Dr. Patwardhan, a Professor of Health Sciences, biomedical scientist, and ethnopharmacologist, stated that the collaboration between WHO and the Indian government was critical. He stated that many countries should work together for the common good in order for the new methodology for evidence-based integrated medicine to advance quickly. “We will create a consortium where countries working on various aspects of traditional medicine can come together and innovate,” he noted, adding equity for healthcare is another focus.