Field and river

20th International Conference of Ethiopian Studies (ICES20)
Mekelle University, Ethiopia

"Regional and Global Ethiopia - Interconnections and Identities"
1-5 October, 2018

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TEBABER Chanie Workneh, University of Gondar
MIRGISSA Kaba, Addis Ababa University, Ethiopia
GUDAYE Emirie, Addis Ababa University
YALEMTSEHAY Mekonnon, Addis Ababa University

In Ethiopia, about 80 percent of the population still prefer to solve their health problems consulting indigenous healers. Although public patronage is sustaining and even fostering their growth both in developing and developed countries, there still exists gaps between public choice and national, institutional efforts for integration. The study, therefore, aims to investigate the roles of indigenous medicine for primary health care delivery, factors affecting the resort and challenges of the integration of indigenous medicine to the biomedical health care system. In order to meet the objectives of this study, mixed research design was used. Pursuing primarily the qualitative research methods such as direct observation, in-depth interview, Focus Group Discussions (FGDs), survey method was also employed as a supplementary. Thematic analysis was employed to analyze, and at times synthesize the qualitative data and data survey was entered into Statistical Package for Social Science (SPSS), Version 20 for analysis. Findings indicated that indigenous healing tends to be their first preference. The survey data supported that the majority (59%) of the respondents used indigenous medicine. The main reason explaining this preference is that indigenous medicine is culturally acceptable and financially affordable. The study also indicates that medicine for malaria is prepared by grinding and mixing ginger, Moringa leaves, garlic, and black seed (tikur azmud), and then the patient is made to drink the infusion. Interpretative approach in relation to indigenous medicine and healing can be reflected and understood in connection to how one can produce meaning from symbols, which facilitate relationships between indigenous health practitioners and patients. Understanding the cultural context of health, illness and healing and the involvement of indigenous healers in the primary health-care systems is imperative in the study area for prevention and treatment of diseases. Thus, in order to maximize the benefits of indigenous medicine, the legal frameworks and service facilities for the use of indigenous medicine for primary health-care service should be re-examined in light of addressing the needs and interests of the local people.