Promotion of Public Health Care Using African Indigenous Knowledge Systems and and Implications for IPRs: Experiences From Southern and Eastern Africa

"The challenge for African policy makers and researchers is to create the right environment for more research on the role of IKS in promoting public health care issues and sustainable development. They should take advantage of the forces of globalization, such as the information and communication technology (ICT) to promote collaborative research and networking. Using documented examples from various countries in Southern and Eastern Africa, the paper shows the role of African indigenous knowledge in promoting public health care and associated human resource capacity building. African indigenous knowledge and technology systems are used in the mitigation of human and animal diseases; and in promoting community food security and nutrition. The paper also presents examples of the interface between African indigenous knowledge and Western knowledge systems in promoting public health care; and the implications for intellectual property rights (IPR)."