The National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC) has called on the government and other stakeholders to provide more support and funding for herbal medicine.
“Investment in herbal medicine research and development is needed from all stakeholders, including the government, so we can benefit from whatever God has given to us freely,” stated NAFDAC director-general Mojisola Adeyeye on Sunday during the inaugural symposium and launching of the Africa Centre of Excellence for Drug Research, Herbal Medicine Development and Regulatory Science (ACEDHARS) at the University of Lagos.
The NAFDAC boss said support for research via funding and development of herbal medicine would help meet the desire for universal health coverage for all.
She noted that investment in herbal medicine research and development would positively impact the economy of the pharmaceutical and traditional medicine industry.
According to her, herbal medicines are important to healthcare delivery and can contribute significantly to universal health coverage.
“Despite widespread use, traditional medicines have not yet been integrated into the national healthcare system of many developing countries, including Nigeria,” she added. “The increasing use of herbal medicine despite general lack of research on some of these products is a call for concern.”
Some herbal medicines got to the market without adequate research and clinical trials to confirm their safety and efficacy, the NAFDAC boss explained.
Mrs Adeyeye also advised herbal medicine practitioners to take advantage of the centre to increase their knowledge.