Mrs. Nora Tei-Larbe, its Ashanti Regional Director, was emphatic that only the allopathic drugs – “Western” medicine, had been registered for its management.
She added that, it was therefore unlawful for anybody – herbalists and faith healers, to advertise the cure of HIV and AIDS, when they had not gone through the requisite procedures.
She was speaking at a meeting held with herbalists and faith healers from across the Ashanti Region.
It was organized by the Social Accountability Monitoring Committee of the Ghana AIDS Commission (GAC) to help them to have a clear picture of the HIV situation in the region and what they needed to know about the infection as well as other sexually transmitted infections (STIs) and tuberculosis.
The meeting also provided the platform to educate and encourage them to follow due process to register their drugs with the FDA.
Mrs. Tei-Larbe advised that they directed HIV infected patients, who sought their services to the antiretroviral therapy (ART) centres for proper medication to keep them healthy and alive.
Traditional medicines have tremendous benefit to the health sector, however, for the safety of consumers, it is only legal to subject products to clinical tests to be approved by the Authority.”
Ms. Olivia Graham, the GAC’s Technical Support Unit Coordinator, expressed deep worry that many people living with the infection were abandoning antiretroviral drugs (ARVs) for traditional medication due to claims of cure by traditional healers.
This, she indicated, was only worsening their conditions and could not just continue.
She said the ARVs had been tested and approved globally for the management of HIV/AIDS and called on traditional healers to direct patients to the ART centres for approved drugs.
Mr. Stephen Osei- Agyepong Nyedua, the Regional Director for Traditional Medicine Practice Council (TMPC), underlined the need to train traditional healers to become more scientific in their practice.
That, he said, was important as they had been playing vital role to complement orthodox healthcare.