Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Study encourages use of herbal medicine

Study encourages use of herbal medicine

A man waits in a traditional medicine shop in Phnom Penh to stock up on supplies in 2016. A new study encourages the integration of herbal medicine into Cambodia’s primary health care system.
A man waits in a traditional medicine shop in Phnom Penh to stock up on supplies in 2016. A new study encourages the integration of herbal medicine into Cambodia’s primary health care system. Eliah Lillis

Study encourages use of herbal medicine

Researchers in a new study have encouraged the integration of herbal medicine into Cambodia’s primary health system given its common use among the population, but stopped short of endorsing its efficacy, saying traditional medicines should be further researched.

“Since the importance of [herbal medicine] is well accepted by the population and officially supported by the Cambodian government, integration of [herbal medicine] into the primary health care system should be further encouraged and supported by more specific research,” reads the study, published in the BMC Complementary and Alternative Medicine earlier this month.

Researchers found herbal medicine was commonly used across all genders, age groups and locations to treat chronic diseases. But people with higher educational attainment were less likely to use herbal medicines. And while people with chronic diseases were found to be highly satisfied with herbal medicine, more research is needed, the study says. Still, the study noted herbal medicine plays an important role in Cambodia given the high out-of-pocket costs of health care.

But Chum Sopha, executive director of the NGO Health and Development Alliance, said he wouldn’t support the integration of herbal medicine into the primary health care system.

“It seems like you go back to part of the 1980s,” he said. “The world has changed . . . Traditional medicine right now it’s just cheating and very dangerous.”

The study notes that “further research into specific formula and usages in Cambodia would help ascertain the safety of these medications”.

MOST VIEWED

  • South Korea’s first lady brings hope to ill boy

    South Korea’s first lady Kim Keon-hee – wife of current president of the Republic of Korea, Yoon Suk Yeol – met with a 14-year-boy with congenital heart disease during her trip to the Kingdom for the ASEAN Summit. After their meeting it was announced that the

  • Hun Sen gets Covid, shuns G20, APEC summits

    Prime Minister Hun Sen said he has tested positive for Covid-19 in Indonesia, where he is slated to attend the G20 summit in his capacity of the ASEAN chair. In a social media post addressing the Cambodian public, he said: “Before leaving Cambodia, I always

  • Moody’s sets outlook rating to ‘negative’ for Cambodia

    US global rating agency Moody’s Investors Service Inc on November 15 announced that it downgraded Cambodia’s outlook from “stable” to “negative” and maintained its B2 local and foreign currency issuer ratings. “The negative outlook reflects a deteriorating external position as illustrated by the severe

  • Hun Sen’s Covid infection caused by ‘weakened antibody’ after summit

    Prime Minister Hun Sen said exhaustion from heavy workload before and during the recent ASEAN Summit may have led to him contracting Covid-19 due to his weakened immune system, while rejecting speculations that the infection was caused by leaders of some countries who did not

  • Korean first lady paves way for ill boy’s surgery

    A 14-year-old boy with congenital heart disease who was lucky enough to meet with South Korean first lady Kim Keon-hee may get the chance of a lifetime and receive surgery and treatment at Asan Medical Center in Seoul, South Korea. After seeing his plight, many

  • Kingdom’s rice crowned world’s No1

    Cambodia’s Phka Rumduol jasmine variety has been crowned the World’s Best Rice for the fifth time at the TRT (The Rice Trader) World Rice Conference in Phuket, Thailand on November 17, according to leaders of the Kingdom’s apex rice industry body. Phka Rumduol