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FINDING A COMMON LANGUAGE Lesley Braun, Suzanne Grant, Anthony Solomon, Stuart Glastonbury, Jennifer Hunter.

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Presentation on theme: "FINDING A COMMON LANGUAGE Lesley Braun, Suzanne Grant, Anthony Solomon, Stuart Glastonbury, Jennifer Hunter."— Presentation transcript:

1 FINDING A COMMON LANGUAGE Lesley Braun, Suzanne Grant, Anthony Solomon, Stuart Glastonbury, Jennifer Hunter


3 Finding a common language AIMA 2012 Dr Lesley Braun Adjunct Snr Research Fellow Monash/Alfred Psychiatric Research centre Research Pharmacist, The Alfred Hospital Lead for the IMER group Executive Director NHAA Executive committee CITIG for COSA I N T E G R A T I V E MEDICINE EDUCATION AND RESEARCH GROUP

4 Finding a common language Biomedical western medicine and other medical systems have some common language but many differences Terms differ for : Diagnosis Philosophy of practice Describing treatments, their actions and outcomes

5 Finding a common language Examples of different ‘language’ being used Problems it has raised Some of the solutions used

6 At The Alfred hospital - massage or musculoskeletal therapy or myotherapy ?

7 Terms for herbs Common name: Bitter gourd Botanical name: Momordia charantia Actions: Anti-diabetic medicine Hypoglycemic herb

8 Translating herbal terms to biomedicine – please help? Astringent Antibacterial Balancing Tonic Adaptogen (assist body’s capacity to deal with stress) Warming herb Cooling herb Alterative (assists in cleansing/detoxifying) Astringent Antibiotic Restoring homeostasis? ?? Causing vasodilation? Refrigerant (if topical) ??

9 Finding a common language? If you don’t have the word, can you have the concept? Why don’t we have the same words?

10 Dictionaries – easy way to build a bridge ? ‘Bilingual’ practitioners? Multi-modal education? Specialised referral letters? Collaborative working environments?

11 Dr Stuart Glastonbury MBBS, BSc(med), DipWHM National Herbalists Association of Australia (NHAA)

12  Western herbal medicine (WHM) traces back to European traditions  Over time borrowed knowledge and plant medicine from other people, cultures and healing traditions  Contemporary WHM now often a mixture of historical western philosophy, traditional Chinese philosophy as well as Ayurveda, Nth American practices and others

13  Retains some traditional roots while borrowing from numerous other traditional medical/health systems  Creates a diverse and eclectic language  often at times a confusing language?  Move in modern times to unite under a biomedical language  A move towards medicalisation of herbal medicine practice?  Language creates identity

14  Most WHM practitioners already share what is essentially a common language  Often a language of biomedical disease processes  Some fully embrace this  Some reject it  Some sit in the middle  NHAA has practitioners on all sides and in the middle!

15  Credibility in a western thought dominated health system?  Credibility with Medical Doctors?  Rational and descriptive?  Clear communication with other health care providers  Because this is what colleges teach now?  Push for registration and recognition?  Driven by CM companies agenda?  Search for identity?

16  Do we need a common language to work together effectively?  Or just common objectives?

17 Dr Suzanne Grant, Chinese Herbalist & Acupuncturist Post Doctoral Research Fellow, UWS

18  Structure  Philosophy  Administrative support  Team resources  Communication mechanisms




22 Should we all be speaking the language of Chinese medicine? Qi Yin & yang When qi gathers, the physical body is formed; when qi disperses, the body passes on” The basic premise of yin and yang is that the only constant factor in natural phenomena is universal change. Nothing remains the same; no disease, no condition, no emotion, no treatment or diagnosis, absolutely everything is in a constant state of flux.

23 1.A common language? Why? Why not? Who benefits? 2.What are the different languages and paradigms? 3.What concepts/topics do we need a common languages for? What areas are most urgent or important? 4.Is a common language possible? 5.What ideas and solutions do we have to improve communication between practitioners in a clinic, between practitioners (and patients) from different clinics, between clinics and hospitals, between countries? Focus questions

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