On December 9, 1997, President Fidel V. Ramos signed Republic Act No. 8423 creating the Philippine Institute of Traditional and Alternative Health Care (PITAHC).
President Ramos appreciated the potential of traditional medicine in health and economy which he includes in one of his administration’s “pole-vaulting strategies.”
PITAHC, a government-owned and controlled corporation (GOCC) attached to the Department of Health, answers the present needs of the people on health care through the provision and delivery of traditional and alternative health care (TAHC) products, services and technologies that have been proven safe, effective and affordable.
Among the medicinal plants that are now being manufactured in convenient forms are “lagundi” (for cough and asthma), “sambong” (a diuretic which helps prevent the formation of kidney stones), “tsaang gubat” (for abdominal pains and as antimotility agent), “yerba buena” (for fever and body pains), “niyog-niyogan” (for ascariasis), “bayabas” or guava (use as wound disinfectant or antiseptic), “akapulko” (for antifungal skin infections), “ulasimang-bato” (for arthritis and gout), “bawang” (for lowering cholesterol), and “ampalaya” (for diabetes mellitus).
In the Philippines, the practice of traditional medicine, which has been passed on from generation to generation, has gained a deep significance in health delivery considering the expensive western medical treatment which most Filipinos cannot afford.
Reference: Philippine News Agency