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STRATEGIES FOR ENHANCING INFORMATION ACCESS TO TRADITIONAL MEDICAL PRACTIONERS TO AID HEALTH CARE DELIVERY IN NIGERIA.
Date of this Version
The purpose of this review is to establish a conceptual frame work on the traditional medicine practice which can also means folk medicine, native healing, local or indigenous healthcare practice, etc. This article also discussed much about traditional medical practitioners (healers). Different categories of traditional healers were also discussed including the importance and challenges of tradition medicine practice. These challenges include the array of mystery and secrecy surrounding traditional healthcare delivery, difficulty of modern health care practitioners in accepting traditional medical healthcare practice due to the unorthodox nature of traditional medical practice. Some of the other problems include the low level of education and literacy amongst traditional medicine practitioners, and failure of government to properly regulate the traditional medical practice. Furthermore, the study also gave conceptual definitions of information and roles of information in health care delivery. Information is indispensable for effective management and development of health care delivery services, therefore, it is considered as an important asset or resource. Grey, adequate and relevant information is needed regarding population characteristic and output of health care activities. Additionally, the study suggested five basic steps to be adopted to help the traditional medical practioners have access to information resources since their illiteracy level is very high. Some of these steps include the use of focal group discussion, translation of existing information into local language, use of posters, handbills, Radio jingles, Television broadcast and use of community library and information centers amongst others to make information readily available to these medical health practioners.