Online Program

Costs and economic impact of traditional herbal medicine utilization for non-communicable diseases

Monday, November 4, 2013

Gail Hughes, DrPH, MPH, Department iof medical biosciences, University of Western Cape, Belville, South Africa
Oluwaseyi Aboyade, PhD, MSc, South African Herbal Science and Medicine Institute, University of the Western Cape, Cape Town, South Africa
Rafia Rasu, School of Pharmacy, University of Missouri-Kansas City, USA, Kansas, MO
Background: Non-communicable diseases (NCD) constitute a major public health problem globally. Many patients rely on traditional herbal medicines (THM) alone or in combination with conventional drugs for the treatment of NCD. However, little is known on how much is spent on herbal medicines. There is scant research on the cost implications of THM use to health care utilization. Methodology: The Prospective Urban and Rural Epidemiological (PURE) study is a population-based cohort study involving 150,000 adults from 17 low-, middle- and high-income countries including South Africa. The South African arm involves a population-based cohort study which recruited 2000 adults in both urban and rural communities to investigate the impact of social and environmental transition on the health among people using THM for NCDs. The PURE-THM study will illustrate the importance of gathering information on use of herbal remedies, costs and spending patterns in South Africa for NCD. The following will be discussed: resource-use and expenditures; annual direct and indirect costs for households and direct costs for health and THM based on SES, gender and geographical regionalism; and the methods toward incorporating cost estimations and economic evaluation. Results: This study describes the design, methodology and justification of incorporating cost estimations of THM for NCD. Conclusion: This cost and utilization pattern data collection addresses important healthcare policy decisions towards valuing the underlying economic depiction of THM usage in this population and better understanding of reducing the burden of healthcare cost for NCD.

Learning Areas:

Biostatistics, economics
Provision of health care to the public
Public health or related public policy

Learning Objectives:
Design methodology of incorporating cost estimations of traditional herbal medicines for non-communicable diseases. Evaluate the cost and utilization pattern data collection to address the important healthcare policy decisions of traditional herbal medicine use.

Keyword(s): Chronic Diseases, Economic Analysis

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I possess a 25 year work experience as an Epidemiologist with a Master's and Doctoral degree. Presently I am the Director of South African Herbal Science and Medicine Institute at the University of the Western Cape, Bellville, South Africa.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.