Even after adding 40 ethnic drugs to the reimbursement list for the national medical insurance programme in 2017, China on Thursday issued guidelines to help ethnic medicine play a greater role in improving the country’s public health services.
The State Administration of Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) and 12 other authorities – including those covering ethnic affairs, education, science and technology, finance, and human resources – issued the guidelines.
“Some ethnic groups affected by extreme poverty have rich knowledge of valuable herbs and useful medical practices. With support, these people could lift themselves out of poverty,” said Zhao Wenhua, deputy head of the administration’s medical administration department.
Identifying a lack of regulations on the production and sale of ethnic medicine, aithorities encouraged favorable policies to provide better medical training.
China’s TCM Law, in effect since July 2017, states that ethnic medicine is an important part of TCM and requires local governments to provide support.
It added that 43 Chinese colleges have also launched education programmes on ethnic medicine, with over 13,000 students enrolled in 2016.