Tuesday, December 2, 2008

WHO monographs on selected medicinal plants - VOLUME 3


Increasing role of the WHO monographs on selected medicinal plants Since 1999, WHO has published two volumes of the WHO monographs on selected medicinal plants. Volume 1 includes 28 monographs and volume 2 contains an additional 30 monographs.

Despite the increasing use of herbal medicines, there is still a signifi cant lack of research data in this fi eld, so that the WHO monographs are playing
an increasingly important role. For example, in the recent WHO global survey on national policy and regulation of herbal medicines, of the 34 countries reporting that they do not have their own national monographs and use other monographs, 13 use the WHO monographs as an authoritative reference.

Moreover, the format of the WHO monographs continues to be commonly used for developing national monographs. In the same survey, of the 46 countries that have already developed national monographs on herbal medicines, several countries, such as Armenia, Bhutan, Brazil, Malaysia, and Myanmar, reported having used the WHO format as a basis.

In May 2002, WHO launched its Traditional Medicine Strategy covering the period 2002–2005. In 2003, the World Health Assembly adopted resolution WHA56.31 on traditional medicine, which requests WHO to seek, together with WHO collaborating centres, evidence-based information on the quality, safety and cost-effectiveness of traditional therapies. The objective is to provide guidance to Member States on the defi nition of products to be included in national directives and proposals on traditional-medicine policy implemented in national health systems. The continued development of the WHO monographs on selected medicinal plants is one of the important activities being undertaken to meet the demands from Member States and in the implementation of the WHO Traditional Medicine Strategy.

No comments: