[ 28th November 2012 by Allam 0 Comments ]

(pp.307-320) B. N. Ngwenya, K. Andrae-Marobela, K. N. Monyatsi, H. Okatch, A. Masizana-Katongo and M. Muzila ‘A globalized context of traditional healing practices in Botswana’, IJFNPH, Vol. 5, No. 4, 2012

International Journal of Food, Nutrition and Public Health (IJFNPH)Barbara N. Ngwenya, Okavango Research Institute (ORI), Botswana
Kerstin Andrae-Marobela, University of Botswana and Centre for Scientific Research, Indigenous Knowledge & Innovation (CesrIKi), Botswana
Keitseng N. Monyatsi, African Regional Intellectual Property Organization (ARIPO), Zimbabwe
Harriet Okatch, University of Botswana, Botswana
Audrey Masizana-Katongo, University of Botswana, Botswana
Mbaki Muzila, University of Botswana, Botswana

Purpose: This study examines how the globalized context of healers shape traditional healthcare systems in Botswana with regard to the diverse spectrum of global technologies, global epidemics and patients.
Design/methodology/approach: A participatory exploratory study design was chosen combined with a multiple approach to data collection and analysis using consultative and report-back workshops, individual interviews and focusgroup discussions.
Findings: Whereas 75 per cent of traditional healers were village-based, 89 per cent of their clients either originated from within or outside of Botswana. Traditional healer’s training was found to be a lifelong learning. The traditional healthcare profession is shaped by many influences that characterise the global world. Most traditional healers recognized HIV and AIDS as a “new” global disease to which they had to adapt. Forty-six per cent of healers owned mobile phones, which are used to contact national and international patients, demonstrating the use of modern information technology.
Originality/value: Contrary to common perceptions of traditional healthcare systems as only locally defined, this study presents findings that traditional healing is shaped by and shapes a global health context.
Keywords: Traditional medicine; Traditional healers; Globalization

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