Addressing Hegemony within the System of Medicine for an Inclusive and Sustainable Health System: The Case of Traditional Medicine in India

Main Article Content

Nemthianngai Guite

Abstract

There is growing interest and belief in the effectiveness and efficacy of the traditional system of medicine and its sustainability within the health system. The domination and superiority of biomedicine over traditional medicine have been visible from postcolonial time to till date. At the same time, there is also an increased attempt to streamline and harmonize the diversity of the traditional system of medicine with the modern system of medicine. However, it has often resulted in detrimental outcomes for many traditional health practitioners, including the system of medicine they practice. The dominance and interplay of the power relationships and social structural inequalities are not discussed and deliberated extensively in the published literature as one of the crucial reasons for medical hegemony. Therefore, the essay’s objective is to address the hegemony in traditional medicine regulation, professionalization, commoditization and intellectual property rights. In doing so, an attempt has been made to argue for the traditional care providers such as bonesetters and Dais (Traditional Birth Attendants) whose services remain undermined due to their social identity, often overlooking the difficult conditions in which they provide care. This may give us a more inclusive and sustainable health system perspective. The traditional medicine system and the care providers, deserve the long denied respect from the medical care and health science community; and better recognition, preservation and protection of their skills.

Article Details

How to Cite
Guite, N. (2022). Addressing Hegemony within the System of Medicine for an Inclusive and Sustainable Health System: The Case of Traditional Medicine in India. CASTE / A Global Journal on Social Exclusion, 3(2), 335-344. https://doi.org/10.26812/caste.v3i2.446
Section
Research Articles
Author Biography

Nemthianngai Guite, Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi, India

 

Associate Professor, Centre of Social Medicine and Community Health, School of Social Sciences, Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi, India