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Title: Facilitators and barriers of herbal medicine use in Accra, Ghana: an inductive exploratory study
Authors: Aziato, Lydia
Antwi, Hannah O
Issue Date: 26-May-2016
Citation: BMC Complementary and Alternative Medicine. 2016 May 26;16(1):142
Abstract: Abstract Background The use of complementary and alternative medicine including herbal medicine is increasing in many countries including Ghana. However, there is paucity of research on the perspectives of patrons of herbal medicine regarding the facilitators and barriers of herbal medicine use. This study sought to investigate the facilitators and barriers of herbal medicine among Ghanaian adults who use one form of herbal medicine or the other. Methods The study employed an inductive exploratory qualitative approach. It was conducted at a private herbal clinic in Accra. Purposive sampling was employed to recruit 16 participants. Data collection was through individual face-to-face interviews and these were transcribed and analysed using content analysis procedures. Results It was realized that the factors that enhanced the use of herbal medicine included use of convincing information to enhance the initiation of herbal medicine use, effectiveness of herbal medicine, personal preference for herbal medicine, perceived ineffectiveness of western medicine and integration of spirituality in herbal medicine. The factors that hindered herbal medicine use included negative perceptions and attitudes about herbal medicine, poor vending environment, poor knowledge of vendors, high cost of herbal products at credible herbal clinics and inconsistent effectiveness of some herbal products. Participants desired that the national health insurance scheme will cover the cost of herbal medicine to alleviate the financial burden associated with herbal medicine use. Conclusion Although some Ghanaians patronize herbal medicine, the negative perceptions about herbal medicine resulting from deceitful producers and vendors call for enhanced education and monitoring to ensure that effective herbal products are used.
Appears in Collections:Biomed Articles

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