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Journal of Integrative Medicine ›› 2023, Vol. 21 ›› Issue (5): 423-429.doi: 10.1016/j.joim.2023.06.007

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From talk to action: Developing a model to foster effective integration of traditional medicine into the Ghanaian healthcare system

Irene G. Ampomah a,b, Bunmi S. Malau-Aduli c,d, Aduli E.O. Malau-Aduli e, Theophilus I. Emeto a,f   

  1. a. Public Health and Tropical Medicine, James Cook University, Townsville, Queensland 4811, Australia
    b. Department of Population and Health, University of Cape Coast, Cape Coast UC 182, Ghana
    c. College of Medicine and Dentistry, James Cook University, Townville, Queensland 4811, Australia
    d. School of Medicine and Public Health, The University of Newcastle, Newcastle, NSW 2308, Australia
    e. School of Environmental and Life Sciences, The University of Newcastle, Newcastle, NSW 2308, Australia
    f. World Health Organization Collaborating Centre for Vector-Borne and Neglected Tropical Diseases, James Cook University, Townsville, Queensland 4811, Australia
  • Received:2022-09-16 Accepted:2023-04-18 Online:2023-09-20 Published:2023-09-16
  • Contact: Irene G. Ampomah

This research assessed the experience of stakeholders and the efficacy of integrating traditional medicine into the Ghanaian health system using the Ashanti Region as the focal point. Elements of an integrative healthcare delivery model including philosophies/values, structure, process and outcome were used to conduct a quality assessment of the integrated health system in Ghana. Each element clearly showed that Ghana is currently not running a coordinated health practice model, thus making it a tolerant, rather than an inclusive, health system. Therefore, the primary purpose of this research is to discuss the development of a new and appropriately customised model that could enhance the practice of integrated healthcare in Ghana. The model we present has flexibility and far-reaching applicability in other African countries because such countries share similar socio-cultural and economic characteristics. As such, governments and health practitioners could adapt this model to improve the practice of integrated healthcare in their specific settings. Hospital administrators and health system researchers could also adapt the model to investigate or to monitor the progress and efficacy of integrated healthcare practices within their settings. This might help to understand the relationships between the integration of traditional medicine and health outcomes for a given population.

Key words: Ghana, Healthcare, Health practice, Integrated health, Traditional medicine, Model

[1] Malcolm B. Taw. Integrative medicine, or not integrative medicine: That is the question. Journal of Integrative Medicine, 2015, 13(6): 350-352.
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