Perceptions and practices of modern and traditional health practitioners about traditional medicine in Shirka District, Arsi Zone, Ethiopia

Authors

Abstract

Abstract Background: Traditional medicine is an ancient medical practice that is still widely used in prevention and treatment of various health problems in Ethiopia. Objective: To evaluate perceptions and practices of modern and traditional health practitioners about traditional medicine in Shirka District of Arsi Zone, Ethiopia. Methods: A cross-sectional study pertaining to the perceptions and practices of modern and traditional health practitioners was carried out in February 1999 in four peasant associations of Shirka District. Two types of questionnaires (with closed and open-ended questions) were prepared to assess the respective practitioners. Fourteen modern practitioners and 80 traditional healers were interviewed. Results: Most of the practitioners in both systems had used traditional medicine at least once in their lifetime. The indigenous knowledge surrounding traditional medicine is mainly conveyed verbally and to some extent still employs superstitious beliefs and harmful practices. To substantially reduce the drawbacks and promote its positive elements, both types of practitioners expressed their willingness to collaborate among each other and believe in the need for government support. Conclusion: The knowledge surrounding traditional medicine incorporates a number of harmful practices. To make matters worse, this knowledge is mostly conveyed verbally which may result in the inevitable distortion of original information leading to the expansion of more and more harmful practices. Therefore, the need for more effort of recording the knowledge is stressed. Government support and coordinated effort among the various institutions are emphasized for promotion and development of traditional medicine. [Ethiop. J. Health Dev. 2002;16(1):19-29]

Published

2017-01-05

How to Cite

Addis, G., Abebe, D., Genebo, T., & Urga, K. (2017). Perceptions and practices of modern and traditional health practitioners about traditional medicine in Shirka District, Arsi Zone, Ethiopia. The Ethiopian Journal of Health Development, 16(1). Retrieved from https://ejhd.org/index.php/ejhd/article/view/745

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