Hyderabad-based NIIMH to collaborate with WHO on traditional medicine research

The National Institute of Indian Medical Heritage (NIIMH), Hyderabad has been chosen to become the third institute in India after the Institute for Teaching & Research in Ayurveda, Jamnagar, and the Morarji Desai National Institute of Yoga (MDNIY), New Delhi, to collaborate with WHO on traditional medicine. 

The NIIMH, a unit under the Central Council for Research in Ayurvedic Sciences (CCRAS), Ministry of Ayush, has been designated as a WHO Collaborating Centre (CC) for fundamental and literary research in traditional medicine. This recognition is granted for four years, starting from June 3, 2024.

The collaboration will see NIIMH assist the WHO in standardizing terminologies for Ayurveda, Unani, Siddha, and Sowa-Rigpa, and updating the Traditional Medicine Module-II for the Eleventh edition of the International Classification of Diseases (ICD-11).

NIIMH, established in 1956, is dedicated to the documentation and promotion of medico-historical research across various traditional and modern healthcare disciplines in India. The institute spearheaded the AMAR Portal, which archives 16,000 Ayush manuscripts, including 4,249 digitized manuscripts, 1,224 rare books, 14,126 catalogues, and 4,114 periodicals.

Additionally, the SAHI Portal showcases 793 medico-historical artefacts, while the e-books of the Ayush project offer digital versions of classical textbooks. The NAMASTE Portal aggregates morbidity statistics from 168 hospitals, and the Ayush Research Portal indexes 42,818 published Ayush research articles.

NIIMH also has a repository of over 500 physical manuscripts and houses the Medical Heritage Museum and Library, which contains rare books and manuscripts dating back to the 15th century AD. The institute also publishes the Journal of Indian Medical Heritage.

India hosts approximately 58 WHO Collaborating Centres across various biomedical and allied science disciplines. The WHO has over 800 collaborating centres globally, working in various health-related areas, including traditional medicine, research, and public health.

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