Women Turning to Traditional Healers for Reproductive Health services

Minister of Health DR Christine-Ondoa
Minister of Health DR Christine-Ondoa

Women are constantly turning to traditional healers for their reproductive health needs, where modern medical solutions are not forth coming.

Observations indicate that many modern health services are not friendly, or are far.

This coupled with judgmental attitudes of service providers and stigma associated to patients searching for reproductive health information and services, has made traditional healers a quick option.

According to health experts, women frequently consult with traditional healers on sexual and Reproductive Health matters.

Health practitioners like Dr. Charles Kiggundu, a Gynecologist at Mulago Hospital are concerned that traditional healers more often than not, lack accurate and timely information and skills to effectively deal with Sexual and Reproductive Health (SRH) and issues such as HIV/AIDS/STD’s.

Kiggundu argues that although there is a significant change in modern medicine technology – traditional healers have not changed their practice very much. This puts at risk the health of those seeking traditional medicine.

But, Traditional Healers have maintained that unlike the mainstream medical services, they are easily accessible and flexible in terms of payment and time of the service.

They also say they are warm and perform their services in a confidential and culturally accepted environment. Uganda Radio Network spoke to Musanje Kyalaggu – Secretary General of Uganda Nedaggala Lyayo.

Health Experts warn patients to be cautious of many quacks in the Traditional Healing practice.

There are those like Dr. Ben Twinomugisha Centre for Health Human Rights and Development’s (CEHURD) Board Chairman and Law Professor who argue that women should be at the centre of Sexual Reproductive Health issues, if their need is to be adequately addressed.

However, they need to consult for the right medical information before making critical decisions on their reproductive health.

Originally traditional healers offered their expertise as community service and did not ask for money in return, but nowadays many quacks have come up to take advantage of unsuspecting victims.

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