In a long-awaited move, the practice of alternative forms of medical treatment like Ayurveda, Homeopathy, Acupuncture, Hijama and Chiropractic has been officially approved by the Qatar Council for Healthcare Practitioners (QCHP).
QCHP at Supreme Council of Health, which is authorised for licensing and monitoring healthcare practitioners in the country said yesterday that “regulation of Complementary Medicine (CM) practices has been officially approved by the QCHP Board.”
Complimentary medicine instead of alternative medicine
QCHP clarified that the concept of “complimentary medicine” has been adopted instead of “alternative medicine” to ensure that “the patient will receive complementary treatment in addition to conventional medical treatment.”
The initial list of disciplines to be regulated includes Hijama (wet cupping) chiropractic, homeopathy, ayurveda and acupuncture.
“The regulation of Complementary Medicine by QCHP has been one of the decisions long-awaited by the public in Qatar. However, as our main concern is always patient safety, we wanted to assess the impact of this decision before beginning the official implementation”, said QCHP’s Acting CEO, Dr. Samar Aboulsoud.
The QCHP board has already approved a regulatory framework for the practice of complementary medicine in Qatar and an implementation plan has been developed for early this year.
Approved complimentary medicines
Ayurveda is a 5,000-year-old system of natural healing that has its origins in the Vedic culture of India. Although suppressed during years of foreign occupation, Ayurveda has been enjoying a major resurgence in both its native land and throughout the world.
Homeopathy is a ‘treatment’ based on the use of highly diluted substances, which practitioners claim can cause the body to heal itself.
Hijama is the Arabic traditional medicine for wet cupping, where blood is drawn by vacuum from a small skin incision for therapeutic purposes.
Acupuncture is aAcupuncture is a treatment derived from ancient Chinese medicine in which fine needles are inserted at certain sites in the body for therapeutic or preventative purposes
Chiropractic is a form of alternative medicine that focuses on diagnosis and treatment of disorders of the musculoskeletal system, especially the spine, under the belief that these disorders affect general health via the nervous system.
Regulatory framework to standardise complimentary medicines
The regulatory framework will standardise the CM practice so that only licensed, qualified practitioners will be issued a medical license and allowed to practice in Qatar.
It will also provide a legal framework to CM to ensure that the benefits of these practices could be enjoyed without unnecessary risks.
SCH will hold a series of workshops to raise public awareness about important facts regarding complementary medicine, its history, impacts and how it is regulated around the world.