Culture and Health webinar series 2020 – What works?

Ambiente, Natura & Salute


Complementary and alternative medicines in the ̏”biomedical world”

6 February 2020, University of York, United Kingdom

The use of complementary and alternative medicines, such as acupuncture and chiropractic treatment, is growing rapidly. However, there are still many obstacles to their integration into standard health services. How do cultural differences, prejudices and the history of medicine play a role in these practices and their acceptance? And how do we draw the line between what works and what doesn’t?

While traditional medicines have been useful in the delivery of critical primary health care in some developing countries, their use in Europe opens new trajectories. Dr Vivienne Lo, convener of the UCL China Centre for Health and Humanity, will suggest that there is much more to be learned from traditional medicine on its own terms. Dr Lo will use historical examples from China in her presentation. Professor Hugh MacPherson, who holds the post of Emeritus Professor of Acupuncture Research at the University of York, will address questions related to the efficacy and effectiveness of acupuncture for chronic pain, and present recent data on the extent to which acupuncture outperforms placebos. Our third and final speaker, Dr Aditi Bana, from Traditional, Complementary and Integrative Medicine in the Department of Integrated Health Services at WHO, will draw upon her experience and share WHO’s perspective on the theme.

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