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The Federal Government has been urged to appreciate the country’s natural endowments and integrate herbal medicine in the nation’s health-care sector for the wellbeing of the people.

Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer, Ruzu Natural Health Products and Services, Robert Onyeamachi Uzu, gave the advice, when the National Association of Nigerian Students (NANS) paid him a courtesy visit in his office at Igando, Lagos.

Uzu explained that with such integration, individuals would be able to opt for treatment in either alternative or orthodox hospitals.

Noting that the country is blessed with abundant land that are lying fallow, he appealed to government to build botanical gardens in every state, where Nigerians can have access to medicinal plants.

He advised government to also create a programme that would facilitate awareness for Nigerians to appreciate the use of medicinal plants and also choosing between orthodox and herbal drugs for treatment.

Uzu called on the government to provide the enabling environment for practitioners to operate so that there would be no competition between them and medical doctor. He said the two health practitioners should be able to see each other as complimentary rather than competitors.

Acknowledging the challenge facing the industry, Uzu blamed quacks in the profession who made claims about cure for all ailments known to man for the negative perception about herbal practitioners in the country.

He however explained that there is standard in the industry noting that apart from National Agency for Food Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC) certification, the Lagos State Traditional Medicine Board is the body that oversees the industry in the state.

He revealed that practitioners are mandated to undergo series of training before being issued a license which is renewable every year to practice herbal medicine in the state.

Uzu however, appealed to members of the public to aid them in maintaining standard by not purchasing drugs indiscriminately while also urging them to always check for NAFDAC certification on every herbal product.

 

Source: The Guardian Newspaper

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