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Attitude of modern medical practitioners towards the integration of modern and traditional medical practices in Ethiopia

Gemechu Feyera Tolera, Nasir Tajure Wabe, Mulugeta Tarekegn Angamo, Sultan Suleyman Wega, Nezif Hussein Dekama, Sadikalmahdi Hussein Abdella, Mohammed Adem Mohammed.

AIM: The present study was aimed to assess the attitude of modern health practitioners towards the integration of modern and traditional medical practices in central Ethiopia.
METHODS: A cross sectional study was conducted on 92 modern health practitioners working at selected health facilities in Ambo town using structured questionnaire from January 22 to February 15, 2009. The data was edited and were entered in Epi Info Version 6.0 and analysis was conducted using Statistical Package for Social Sciences version 16.0.
RESULT: A total of ninety two modern medical practitioners were included in the study. About 72.8% of modern medical practitioners accept traditional medical practice and 65.2% believed the necessity of education for the use of traditional medicine. Most modern medical practitioners (64.13%) think that traditional medicine has advantages over modern medicine in that it is cheap and accessible to most of the people. On the other hand, lack of standard and qualified dose (71.7%), toxicity (46.7%), lack of knowledge on scientific disease processes (46.7%) and liability to contaminations (35.9%) was mentioned as disadvantages, respectively. Forty seven (51.0%) preferred modern medicine operating alone and 43.4% preferred integrated health care services. Fifty six (60.9%) said cooperation of the two system have positive impact on patient satisfactions.
CONCLUSION: The study showed that the majority of the modern medical practitioners prefer modern medicine operating alone and some modern medical practitioners support the idea of integrative medicine though collaborative work so far is limited. The modern medical practitioners believe that adequate scientific research on traditional medicine and training of traditional medical practice are important for the integration of the two services.

Key words: Modern Medical Practice, Traditional Medicine, Attitude, Ethiopia

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