The growing importance of traditional, alternative and complementary medicine in India

M. Krishnapriya Premachandra


This article discusses the importance of the Ayurveda, Yoga  and Naturopathy, Unani, Siddha and Homoeopathy (AYUSH) system of medicines in India, focusing on the reasons for its adoption in India and on government support in terms of allocation of funds, insurance schemes, growth of the manufacturing sector and education reforms. The author shows the resurgence of traditional, complementary and alternative medicine and local health tradition services by people of the urban as well as the rural areas. The study highlights the strength of people’s knowledge and its links with indigenous systems suggesting that it should be the base to build upon as a positive resource. With government support in mainstreaming AYUSH, and with the expected growth of medical tourism and foreign trade in AYUSH, it is at the take-off stage. Developing countries such as India could significantly improve the healthcare means at their disposal by exploring the scope of these systems to solve the problem healthcare delivery of the future.


traditional medicine; complementary medicine; alternative medicine; AYUSH; India

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