Current Status & Infrastructure of Ayurveda

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					       Current Status & Infrastructure of Ayurveda

                      Dr. S.K. Sharma* and Dr. D.C. Katoch**
                 *Adviser (Ayurveda), **Dy. Advisec (Ayurveda)
           Department of AYUSH, Ministry of Health & Family Welfare,
       Government of India, IRCS Building, 1 Red Cross Road, New Delhi, India

Ayurveda is a time tested health care system developed over a period of time
(since 500 BC) in Indian sub-continent with continuous use by the community.
It is well organized, codified and amply documented and almost parallel to
allopathic system in terms of institutional and health care network in India.
Ayurveda though popular in all the states of the country, but it is comparatively
more prevalent and acceptable in Kerala, Gujarat, Himachal Pradesh, Rajasthan,
Karnataka, Maharashtra, Madhya Pradesh, Jharkhand, Chattisgarh, Uttar Pradesh,
Uttaranchal and Orissa. The distinguished feature of Ayurveda is its holistic
nature. It considers a human being in totality and takes into consideration his
relationship with the environment. The unmatched heritage of this system is a
treasure house of knowledge for both preventive and curative health care. The
positive features of Ayurveda inter alia include diversity and flexibility of
remedies; natural origin of healthcare & therapeutic modalities, large scale
accessibility & affordability; broad acceptance by a section of the general public;
a comparatively low cost; a low level of technological input and growing economic
value. The system provides not only comprehensive treatment strategy for
common as well as chronic ailments, but also aims at enabling the body to fight
the disease effectively while promoting positive health. Due to such attributes,
the system has great potential to serve as a provider of holistic & comprehensive
healthcare, that the larger sections of population in India and foreign countries
       Of late the importance of Ayurveda has been realized owing to its natural
origin and negligible toxicity of medicines, which happens to be quite in contrast
to western medical system that makes use of chemical drugs. In post
independence India, there has been phenomenal growth of Ayurveda and as
a result, a huge infrastructure of healthcare is available in public, private and
voluntary sectors. However, in many parts of the country Ayurveda in various
forms is still the only kind of healthcare available within the financial and
physical reach of the people. Ayurveda sector in India in spite of having a
lot of diversity in many aspects still enjoys significant public and government
patronage. The system is officially recognized and enjoys policy support for

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growth and development on its own genius. Following paragraphs depict the
status of Ayurvedic system in respect of policy support, infrastructure, legislation
& regulation, research & development, courses of study, quality control &
standardization and important initiatives taken by the government for revival,
revitalization and awareness building at national and international levels.

 i) Policy
       There has been a constant policy support to traditional medicine in India.
However, in order to augment the development of traditional systems of medicine
in a systematic manner, the Government of India put in place a separate National
Policy on Indian Systems of Medicine & Homeopathy in the year 2002. The
strategies outlined in this policy are in line to that encompassed in the WHO
strategy for Traditional Medicine. The major objectives of the national policy
for Ayurveda, Yoga, Naturopathy, Unani, Siddha and Homeopathy (AYUSH) are:

      i)    To promote holistic health and expand the outreach of healthcare to people
            through preventive, promotive, mitigative and curative intervention of
     ii)    To ensure affordable AYUSH services & drugs, which are safe and
     iii)   To facilitate availability of quality raw drugs, which are authentic and
            contain essential components as required under pharmacopoeial standards
            to help improve quality of drugs, for domestic consumption and export;
     iv)    To integrate AYUSH in healthcare delivery system and national health
            programmes and ensures optimal use of the vast infrastructure of hospitals,
            dispensaries and physicians;
     v)     To provide full opportunity for the growth and development of AYUSH
            systems and utilization of the potentiality, strength and revival of their

ii) Organizational set-up
      Under the Ministry of Health & Family Welfare, there is a separate
Department of Indian Systems of Medicine & Homeopathy since 1995, which
has now been renamed as the Department of Ayurveda, Yoga, Unani, Siddha
and Homoeopathy (AYUSH). The Department comprises of administrative staff
headed by a Secretary and system wise technical officers headed by Advisors.
The mandate of the department is to see for overall governance of regulation,
development and growth of AYUSH systems in the country and abroad. The
department has three subordinate offices and 15 autonomous bodies in the form
of research councils, national institutes, pharmacopoeia laboratories, a national
level Ayurveda academy and a hospital. The State administrative set-ups are on

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the same analogy. 23 states have separate Directorates of Indian Systems of
Medicine. The central Department of AYUSH administers the Acts related to
regulation of education, practice and drugs of Ayurveda, Siddha, Unani and
Homeopathy through concerned state departments.

iii) Officially recognized systems of medicine
      Apart from Allopathic system, Ayurveda is one of the following six systems
recognized by the Government:
   i)    Ayurveda
   ii)   Siddha
  iii)   Unani
  iv)    Yoga*
  v)     Naturopathy*
  vi)    Homoeopathy

* Yoga & Naturopathy are drugless therapies but properly documented and organized
having long history of practice.

iv) Infrastructure
       A vast infrastructure of Ayurveda comprising teaching institutions,
registered medical practitioners, hospitals & dispensaries and drug manufacturing
units is available in the country as under:
   (a)    Registered practitioners:                           4,30,890
   (b) Total number of Colleges:                              221
   (c) Admission Capacity per annum for
       degree course:                                         12,000 approx.
   (d) Postgraduate colleges:                                 60
   (e) Admission Capacity for Postgraduate courses:           1,000 approx.
   (f)   Ayurveda Universities:                               2
   (g) Licensed Drug Manufacturing Units:                     7,778
   (h) Hospitals:                                             2,500 approx.
    (i) Beds in hospitals:                                    45,000 approx.
    (j) Dispensaries:                                         14,000 approx.

v) National Institutes set up by the Central Government
      Following National Institutes of Ayurveda are established with the
objective to develop them state-of-the-art centers of education, healthcare and
research, which in turn could be models to be followed—

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      i)     National Institute of Ayurveda, Jaipur
     ii)     Institute of Postgraduate Training & Research in Ayurveda, at Gujarat
             Ayurveda University, Jamnagar
     iii)    National Academy of Ayurveda (Rashtriya Ayurveda Vidyapeeth), New
     iv)     All India Institute of Ayurveda, New Delhi (in the offing)

vi) Regulation of education & practice
      For regulation of education and practice of Ayurveda, Siddha and Unani
systems, there is a central regulatory body of statutory nature constituted under
a Parliamentary Act called Central Council of Indian Medicine (CCIM). The
Council was established under the Indian Medicine Central Council Act, 1970
with the responsibility — (i) to lay down standards of education, syllabi & course
curricula, minimum requirements of hospitals, faculties, equipment, clinical
exposure and examination pattern; (ii) to ensure adherence to laid down
standards of education; (iii) to maintain a Central Register of practitioners; (iv)
to recommend to the Central Government for recognition and withdrawal of
medical qualifications awarded by Universities; and (v) to lay down code of
conduct, ethics and etiquette of practitioners.
      In November 2003, the Act was amended for checking mushroom growth
of substandard colleges and to ensure uniform enforcement of legal provisions
for maintenance of educational standards. Now, the Central Government is vested
with the powers of granting permission for opening of new colleges, increase of
admission capacity and starting of new or higher courses of study.

vii) Courses of Study
      Different forms of education & training programme ranging from short &
midterm to full-fledged bachelor, master and postdoctoral courses are conducted
as under at recognized teaching institutions:
            1.   Degree course                           5 ½ years (BAMS)
            2.   Post Graduate degree course             3 years (MD/MS)
            3.   Post Doctorate course (Ph.D.)           Minimum 2 years
            4.   Short & mid term courses                2 months to 2 years
                 (Certificate and Diploma courses)
     With the enactment of Indian Medicine Central Council Act in 1970, graduate
and postgraduate courses of Ayurveda conducted in approved institutions are
recognized by the central councils and there are uniform course curricula
throughout the country. A few institutions, particularly Gujarat Ayurveda
University, Jamnagar and Banaras Hindu University, Varanasi are conducting short

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& midterm as well as full-fledged courses for foreign students. Apart from general
procedure of admission to various courses of study, the Government has
earmarked certain seats in government institutions for admission of foreign
students and wards of Non-resident Indians.
      The Department of AYUSH has proposed a capsule course of basic
concepts and fundamentals of Ayurveda for incorporation in MBBS curriculum.
The matter is under consideration of Medical Council of India. Ayurveda courses
are also being conducted in many foreign countries.

viii) Regulation & Quality control of Drugs
       Government has taken a number of legislative and administrative measures
to regulate the manufacturing and sale of Ayurveda, Siddha and Unani (ASU)
drugs. The regulatory Act and the Rules thereunder are common for allopathic
and Indian medicines & homeopathic drugs. There is a separate Chapter IVA in
the Drugs & Cosmetics Act, 1940 with provisions for regulation of manufacture
and sale of ASU drugs, packaging and labeling of ASU drugs for domestic use
and export and penalty for manufacture and sale of ASU drugs in contravention
of these rules and for misbranded, adulterated and spurious ASU drugs.
       The Act is enforced through the State Drug Licensing and Drug Control
Authorities. A separate Ayurveda, Siddha and Unani Technical Advisory Board
(ASUDTAB) has been constituted by the Central Government comprising of
officials and nominees of Central Government, pharmacogonists, phytochemists
and Members of the Ayurveda Pharmacopoeia Committee, Siddha Pharmacopoeia
Committee and Unani Pharmacopoeia Committee and representatives of teachers,
practitioners and ASU drugs industry nominated by the Central Government to
advise the Central and State Governments on technical matters relating to
regulation of ASU drugs. The Central Government has also constituted a
Ayurveda, Siddha and Unani Drugs Consultative Committee (ASUDCC) under
the Act to advise the Central and State Governments and the ASUDTAB on any
matter for the purpose of securing uniformity throughout India in the
administration of Drugs & Cosmetics Act, 1940 as it relates to ASU drugs. Periodic
meetings of these statutory bodies are held and all technical and regulatory issues
arising out of the enforcement of Chapter IVA of the Drugs & Cosmetics Act,
1940 relating to ASU drugs are referred to these bodies for advising the Central
and State Governments. A specific law, the Drugs & Magic Remedies Act, 1954,
is also in place for prevention of objectionable advertisements & publicity relating
to certain drugs and magic remedies for treatment of certain identified diseases
and disorders.
       Laying down of pharmacopoeial standards of drugs are mandatory as per
Drugs & Cosmetics Act, which was amended in 1964 to bring under its purview
Ayurveda, Siddha and Unani drugs. For implementation of the Act and Rules

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thereunder, and as a first step the Pharmacopoeial Laboratory of Indian Medicine
(PLIM) was set up in 1970 and the Homoeopathic Pharmacopoeial Laboratory
(HPL) was set up in 1975 to facilitate drug standardization & testing of ASU
drugs. In addition, 13 other reputed laboratories have been engaged to lay down
pharmacopoeial standards, preparation of monographs and for evolving Standard
Operating Procedures (SOPs) for ASU drugs. Pharmacopoeial Committees have
been constituted separately for ASU systems. It is the responsibility of these
Committees to lay down standards of quality, purity and strength of drugs and
approve drug formularies. So far, 326 monographs of Ayurveda drugs in 4
volumes, 45 of Unani drugs, 916 of Homeopathic drugs have been published.
Another 98 monographs on Ayurveda drugs are due for publication very soon.
Formularies of Ayurveda, Siddha and Unani containing 636, 248 and 745 multi-
ingredient classical formulations, respectively have been published to facilitate
manufacture of drugs with uniform composition and manufacturing procedures.

ix) Parameters adopted for Quality control & Standardization
       Ayurveda, Siddha and Unani drugs, which are mainly poly-herbal/herbo-
mineral preparations, are very different from synthetic molecules of the allopathic
system which are produced under controlled laboratory conditions. Much
depends on the quality and availability of raw materials of botanical origin.
Keeping this in view, the National Medicinal Plants Board (NMPB) was established
in the year 2000 with the objective of in situ conservation and ex situ cultivation
of quality medicinal plant raw materials.
       In view of environmental pollution the NMPB is examining how best to
adopt Good Agricultural and Collection Practices for collection and cultivation
of medicinal plants for ensuring quality raw material for ASU medicines. As a
large number of our forest dwellers and small landholders are engaged in
collection and cultivation, these norms have to be adopted in a way that their
livelihood is not affected.
       Both traditional and modern parameters are used for quality testing and
standardization of raw materials as well as finished products. Many methods
from organoleptic standardization of drugs, chemical analysis, biological assaying
for testing of heavy metals, pesticides and microbial load have been developed
for quality control and standardization of ASU drugs. An effort has been made
to include chromatographic fingerprint profile as a supplementary to Ayurvedic
Pharmacopoeia. Identification of active therapeutic ingredients and marker
compounds with reference to which ASU drugs, which can be standardized are
still evolving and all these parameters are being added to the ASU
pharmacopoeia. Pharmacopoeial Laboratories and laboratories of Central Council
for Research in Ayurveda and Siddha (CCRAS), Central Council for Research in
Unani Medicine (CCRUM), various laboratories of Council for Scientific &

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Industrial Research (CSIR) and private sector institutions and laboratories are
doing a commendable job in evolving and laying down safety and quality
standards for poly-herbal/herbo-mineral preparations including plant extracts.
It needs to be emphasised that the work of quality control and standardization
of herbal/herbo-mineral drugs is much more complex and standards are constantly
evolving and this is not only true for ASU drugs, it is equally so in other
traditional systems of medicine all over the world. While there is a need to speed
up this work for streamlining regulatory mechanism for ASU drugs, it will be
inappropriate to term Ayurveda, Siddha and Unani drugs industry as being
completely unregulated. It needs to be kept in mind that humanity has survived
on traditional medicinal knowledge for thousands of years.
       The following major initiatives have been taken by the Central Government
for ensuring safety and quality control of ASU drugs:
   (i) Good Manufacturing Practices (GMP) for ASU drugs were notified on
       23rd June, 2000 under Schedule ‘T’ of the Indian Drugs & Cosmetics Act,
       1940 and Rules, 1945 which seeks mandatory compliance from the licensed
       manufacturers with regard to raw-materials, manufacturing area,
       manufacturing processes, record keeping, storage of raw-materials and
       finished products and quality testing. State Governments and all State
       Licensing Authorities have been advised vide Department of AYUSH order
       dated 13.10.2005 to ensure strict compliance of GMP by ASU drugs
       manufactures and cancel the license of non-GMP compliant units.
  (ii) Provisions relating to proper labeling, packing and conspicuous display
       of all the ingredients along with the quantities contained in the
       formulations on the label/container or a leaflet inserted inside the container,
       have been reiterated for compliance by an order issued by the Department
       of AYUSH on 10.10.2005 for strict compliance by State Drug Controllers/
       Licensing Authorities.
  (iii) To address domestic as well as international concerns on presence of
        heavy metals in ASU drugs exporters of purely herbal ASU drugs have
        been directed to either conspicuously display on the container of purely
        herbal ASU drugs words “Heavy metals within permissible limits” or
        furnish the above certificate from an appropriately equipped in-house
        laboratories or any other approved laboratories along with other
        consignment papers w.e.f. 1.1.2006. Mandatory testing for heavy metals
        on purely herbal ASU drugs will also be extended for sale of purely herbal
        ASU drugs within the country in phases keeping in view the testing
        infrastructure within the country.
  (iv) The issue of safety of herbo-mineral/herbo-metallic Bhasmas / compounds
       is also being addressed by the Central Government. A project has been

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          sanctioned for chemical analysis and safety studies of eight most widely
          used Rasaushadhis / Bhasmas, namely, Kajjali, Rasmanikya, Nag
          Bhasma, Rasasindoor, Basantkusumkar Ras, Arogyavardhini Vati,
          Mahayograj Guggul and Mahalaxmi Vilas Ras by CSIR laboratories
          under the Golden Triangle Project within a time frame of 18 months.
     (v) Use of permissible excipients, preservatives for increasing the shelf-life
         of ASU drugs has been notified. Draft rules for expiry date of ASU drugs
         have also been published in November, 2005 and a consultation process
         is on for finalizing these rules.
  (vi) Certain guidelines have also been issued to State Licensing Authorities
       with a view to curb the mushroom growth of irrational ASU combinations
       through the patent and proprietary route.
      As mentioned above, the issues concerning quality control and
standardization of ASU drugs are very complex and very different from those
concerning regulation of synthetic molecules produced under controlled
laboratory conditions. This is a problem, which is being faced by the regulators
of traditional systems of medicine all over the world. Scientific methods and
techniques for standardization and quality control of herbal/herbo-mineral drugs
are constantly evolving all over the world. Regulators have to keep pace with
the developments taking place in the field of Botany, Phytochemistry and
biochemistry. Apart from public and private sector research institutions,
Ayurvedic drug industry itself is making an important contribution in the field of
evolving methods and standards for drug standardization and quality control.
Many private sector companies in India have made a notable contribution in the
field of evolving standards and preparation of monographs on herbal plant
extracts. Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, Department of AYUSH, apart
from laying down pharmacopoeial standards and issuing guidelines under the
Drugs & Cosmetics Act and Rules from time to time, has initiated a process of
consultation between Ayurveda experts and experts in the field of botany,
Phytochemistry, biochemistry and representatives of Ayurvedic drug industry
for making the regulatory framework responsive to the developments in the field
of science and technology. It is as a result of these measures that use of
techniques like chromatographic fingerprint profiles and use of active therapeutic
ingredients and marker compounds for standardization and quality control of
herbal and herbo-mineral preparations are becoming popular in the Ayurvedic
drug industry.
      The Department of AYUSH is considering, in consultation with all concerned,
to come out with more detailed guidelines for licensing of classical and patent &
proprietary ASU medicines based on a product dossier system with a view to further
improve and strengthen the licensing framework for Ayurvedic drugs.

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       It is to reiterate that there are regulatory mechanisms in place for regulating
standardization and quality control of ASU drugs and the regulatory framework
is evolving in response to the developments in the field of science and
technology. However, the general public should use Ayurvedic medicines as far
as possible under medical supervision and they should be purchased on Cash
Memos/receipts after proper verification of the ingredients mentioned on the label
or on the leaflet inserted inside the container. In case of doubt, they should
consult a qualified Ayurveda/Siddha/Unani practitioner and any contravention
with the labeling provisions should be brought to the notice of concerned Health
Authorities and the Department. ASU Drug Industry Associations are also being
persuaded to motivate their members to move in the direction of self regulation
and self-certification and as a first step, start voluntarily printing indications and
contra-indications of every formulation either on the label/container or in a leaflet
to be inserted in the container for educating the general public regarding their
      A specific law is also in place for prevention of objectionable
advertisements & publicity related to drugs including Ayurveda drugs. The Drugs
& Magic Remedies Act, 1954 provides for prohibition of advertisements of certain
drugs and magic remedies for treatment of certain identified diseases and
disorders and for prohibition of import in to and export from India of certain
advertisements relating to drugs that may mislead the public.

x) Pharmacopoeial & Drug Testing Laboratories and Manufacturing Unit
      The Government established a central laboratory, Pharmacopoeial
Laboratory of Indian Medicine (PLIM) established in Ghaziabad (UP) in 1970 to
work on Pharmacopoeial standards and testing & quality control of Ayurveda,
Siddha and Unani drugs. As many as 13 other scientific laboratories of
universities, CCRAS and CSIR are associated with pharmacopoeial work.
      States have established Drug Testing Laboratories and manufacturing
units for quality production of medicines being supplied to government
dispensaries and hospitals. Central Government supports these units to
improve their structural and functional capabilities. There are about 8,000
Ayurveda manufacturing units in the country, out of which about 40 are in
public and co-operative sectors. Private drug testing laboratories are also
being recognized as per legal provisions to augment enforcement of quality

xi) Priority Programmes
      The government has taken up various priority programmes for development
of AYUSH sector in the following areas:
    i) Strengthening of infrastructure;

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      ii) Standardization of Education;
     iii) Propagation of Medicinal Plant Sector;
     iv) Research & Development;
      v) Awareness building & international collaboration;
     vi) Standardization and Quality Control of drugs;
     vii) Strengthening of enforcement mechanism related to manufacture and sale
          of drugs;
 viii) Mainstreaming of Ayurveda and other systems in National Health
       programmes and health delivery system.

xii) Thrust to Medicinal Plants Sector
      National Medicinal Plants Board and 32 State Medicinal Plant Boards are
set up to coordinate the activities of development of medicinal plants sector in a
concerted manner. The objective of this arrangement is to streamline Conservation
& Cultivation, Demand & Supply, Research & Development, Trade & Export,
Quality Control & Standardization of medicinal plants & products. 32 medicinal
plants used in the manufacture of Ayurveda, Siddha, Unani and Homeopathy
medicines are prioritized for large-scale cultivation through organic farming and
use of agro-technology.

xiii) Research & Development
      The mandate of Research & Development in literary, clinical, family welfare
and drug areas; survey, validation and documentation of tribal and folk-lore
practices & remedies and other scientific activities related to Ayurveda is assigned
to Central Council for Research in Ayurveda & Siddha (CCRAS), which is an
autonomous organization under the Department of AYUSH. The Council has a
huge network of research institutes, units and centers available throughout the
country. The Council undertakes intramural, extramural and collaborative research
      The Government through scientific and medical institutions also
encourages extramural research on project basis. The projects are supported on
merit in priority areas listed by the Government. International collaborative
research activities are also in the offing with National Institutes of Health, USA
as an outcome of Indo-US workshop on Ayurveda organised in November 2003.
To give an impetus to the R&D in Ayurveda, a collaborative research programme
involving Department of AYUSH, Indian Council of Medical Research and
Council of Scientific & Industrial Research has been launched in the name Golden
Triangle Research Programme. The mandate of this programme is to validate and
develop classical Ayurvedic formulations for diseases of national and global
importance. R&D activities under this programme are envisaged to be taken up

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on mission mode with first phase for sleep disorders, urinary disorders & benign
prostate hypertrophy, joint disorders, dyslipidaemia & cardiac problems and

xiv) Initiative for protection of traditional health knowledge
       In order to prevent patenting of claims emerged from traditional knowledge
that already exists in public domain, the Government has taken in hand an
ambitious project of development of Traditional Knowledge Digital Library
(TKDL) for Ayurveda, Unani, Siddha and Yoga. First phase of Ayurveda TKDL
is over, which contains 36,000 formulations described in 14 Ayurvedic texts. The
digital library is prepared in English, Hindi, Spanish, French, German and Japanese
languages in international patent compatible format, which is easily accessible
for patent examination. 50,000 classical formulations are estimated to be covered
in the second phase of Ayurveda library. Survey, revitalization, documentation
and publication of traditional health knowledge are the strategies outlined for
protection of oral information existing in public domain from generation to

xv) Mainstreaming & integration of Ayurveda
       In due appreciation of the requirement of mainstreaming and integration
of Indian Systems of Medicine and Homoeopathy, Government of India has been
supporting this initiative right from independence. However, integration of AYUSH
and Modern Medical systems was envisaged in the National Health Policy-1983.
Subsequently, National Population Policy –2000 adopted mainstreaming and
utilization of AYUSH doctors in National Reproductive & Child Health and
Population stabilization programmes. The objectives and strategies of
mainstreaming are clearly explained in the National Policy on Indian Systems of
Medicine & Homoeopathy – 2002. Corresponding actions taken with regard to
integration of Ayurveda in health delivery are as follows—
  (i)   Seven Ayurvedic drugs are included in the National Reproductive & Child
        Health (RCH) Programme for use by mothers & children. These medicines
        are- Ayush Ghutti, Bal Rasayana, Soubhagya Shunthi, Ark Ajwain, Ark
        Pudina, Punarnavadi Mandoor and Ksheerbala Tel.
   (ii) A pilot project relating to RCH to see the effect of Ayurveda interventions
        in the ante-natal and post-natal care is being implemented in collaboration
        with Central Council for Research in Ayurveda and Siddha (CCRAS) and
        Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR).
  (iii) Some states have taken initiatives for utilizing Ayurveda doctors in the
        primary healthcare delivery system and in National Health programs.
  (iv) The central government has established Ayurveda services under CGHS,
        Ministry of Coal & Mines, Ministry of Labour (ESI), Ministry of Defence

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       and Ministry of Railways. Ayurveda facilities are also established in a
       few major allopathic hospitals. Through a centrally sponsored scheme,
       allopathic hospitals are technically and financially supported to create
       Ayurvedic healthcare facilities at outdoor as well as indoor levels so as
       to facilitate provisioning of comprehensive healthcare from common
       premises and enable people to avail treatment of their choice.
   (v) States are supported for ensuring adequate supply of essential drugs to
       rural and difficult-area dispensaries.
  (vi) Administrative and legislative measures are taken to facilitate functional
       integration of AYUSH and allopathic systems of healthcare at primary,
       secondary and tertiary levels.
 (vii) Under National Rural Health Mission, mainstreaming of AYUSH,
       particularly Ayurveda is the core strategy for improving the quality and
       outreach of healthcare in rural areas. In this initiative a provision has
       been made to set up AYUSH facilities in PHCs and CHCs.

xvi) Globalization and international cooperation & collaboration
       The Government of India has been striving for promotion and propagation
of Indian Systems of Medicine abroad. The efforts have got added momentum
after the establishment of a separate Department of Indian Systems of Medicine
& Homeopathy in 1995. Ayurveda has been recognized as an official system of
healthcare in Hungary. Collaborative efforts for recognition of Ayurveda in Russia
were initiated with Russian Government under a Memorandum of Understanding
(MOU). The Department has taken cognizance of the likely impact of European
Union Directives for regulation of traditional herbal medicinal products on
international recognition and trade of Ayurveda. A claim has been forestalled
with EU Commission and UK Government to segregate Ayurveda from herbal
medicine and consider it an independent system of healthcare that possesses
codified & organized knowledge. Similar dialogues are going on with South Africa
and other countries for acceptance of Ayurveda to enable registration of doctors
for practice and products for trade.
       In the field of Ayurveda education & research, Gujarat Ayurveda University,
Jamnagar (Gujarat) has entered into a Memorandum of Understanding for
collaboration with institutions in Japan, Australia, The Netherlands, Argentina,
Italy, and USA. A faculty of Ayurveda is contemplated to be set up in Nelson
Mandela School of Medicine. Students and professionals from Japan, Russia,
the Netherlands, France, Canada, USA, Poland, Germany, Brazil, Switzerland,
Ukraine and Sri Lanka are studying in introductory and degree courses of
Ayurveda at Gujarat Ayurveda University. Discussions are in process for
deputing Ayurveda experts for short-term courses to USA and Hungary. One of
the universities of West Indies has also requested deputation of Ayurveda

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Professor from India for two years. Department of Science & Technology had
concluded an MOU in March 2002 to establish Russian Centre for Ayurvedic
Research (RICAR) in Moscow, aiming inter-alia at pursuing research and
development studies on Ayurveda.
       In view of the foregoing, it is amply clear that India, by virtue of having
long history and strong base of Ayurveda has an edge and the system is poised
to get globalized for the benefit of humanity suffering largely from diseases
resulted due to erratic lifestyle & stressful living conditions. The health
promotive, disease preventive, rehabilitative and recuperative roles of Ayurveda
coupled with its holistic approach are the driving force that has taken the world
by storm. As a result, global community is looking towards Ayurveda for
solutions to the emerging health problems, which are otherwise not manageable
with concurrent medical approach. Now the time is to harness the benefits of
Ayurveda with its rational, affordable, evidence based and discriminate use.

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