|Staff provide oriental medicine to patients at the Cao Bang Traditional Medicine Hospital. Developing herbal medicine in Ha Noi has met many obstacles as some authorities are not aware of the medicines' importance and staff familiarity with herbal medicine is limited. — VNA/VNS Photo Dinh Tran
HA NOI (VNS) — Developing herbal medicine in Ha Noi has met many obstacles as some authorities are not aware of the medicines' importance and staff familiar with herbal medicine is limited.
This was the stance of Nguyen Cong Soai, the standing deputy secretary of the municipal Party Committee, during a conference on the development of herbal medicines recently.
He also said that the application of valuable remedies was not implemented, thus many of the remedies and many medicinal plants faced risk of being lost.
Chairman of the Ha Noi Herbal Medicine Association Nguyen Hong Xiem added that the State's investment in herbal medicines was low compared with modern medicines, and the combination of herbal and modern medicine was limited.
Management of herbal medicine was not good enough, thus the price and quality of medicine was not controlled, he said.
The city also does not have a proper scheme to grow herbal medicine, so sources are mostly based on imports.
"As much as 80 per cent of the present herbal medicines are imported from China, including Ninh Hiep and Gia Lam districts which are the biggest herbal medicine villages in the northern area," said Xiem.
Xiem and other members of the association proposed the city authorities at different levels to have tight guidelines and supportive policies to create proper conditions for the development of herbal medicine.
Deputy standing secretary Nguyen Cong Soai asked the city's health sector to join hands with relevant bodies to improve herbal medicine wards in general hospitals.
The sector should also co-ordinate with medical universities and vocational schools to create training courses for herbal medicine physicians and conduct researches on valuable remedies.
A plan for exploiting and reprocessing herbal medicine resources should be set up, he said.
The number of patients receiving treatment with herbal medicine increased from nearly 1 million people in 2008 to more than 2 million people in the first half of this year, according to statistics from the Ha Noi Herbal Medicine Association.
Although the number of patients increased, it did not reach the city's target.
As much as 20-30 per cent of the patients received treatment without medicine.
The rate of patients being relieved or totally cured reached 70-80 per cent, and no incidents from the use of herbal medicine was reported, the statistics said. — VNS