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Wednesday, July 24, 2024

WHO Recognizes CCRAS-NIIMH, Hyderabad as Traditional Medicine Research Centre

The World Health Organization (WHO) has designated the National Institute of Indian Medical Heritage (NIIMH), Hyderabad, a unit under the Central Council for Research in Ayurvedic Sciences (CCRAS), Ministry of Ayush as a WHO Collaborating Centre (CC) for “Fundamental and Literary Research in Traditional Medicine” (CC IND-177). This prestigious recognition is granted for a period of four years, starting from June 3, 2024.

Established in 1956, NIIMH, Hyderabad, is a unique institution dedicated to documenting and showcasing medico-historical research in Ayurveda, Yoga Naturopathy, Unani, Siddha, Sowa-Rigpa, Homoeopathy, Biomedicine, and other related healthcare disciplines in India. Under the diligent leadership of Prof. Vaidya Rabinarayan Acharya, Director General of CCRAS, NIIMH and Head of the WHO-CC has achieved this remarkable milestone through constant perusal and dedication.

Prof. Acharya remarked, “This designation by WHO is a significant milestone, reflecting our relentless efforts in the field of traditional medicine and historical research.” The Institute has been a pioneer in various digital initiatives of Ayush, including the AMAR Portal, which catalogues 16,000 Ayush manuscripts, featuring 4,249 digitized manuscripts, 1,224 rare books, 14,126 catalogues, and 4,114 periodicals. The SAHI Portal showcases 793 medico-historical artefacts, while the e-Books of Ayush project provides digital versions of classical textbooks. The NAMASTE Portal collects cumulative morbidity statistics from 168 hospitals, and the Ayush Research Portal indexes 42,818 published Ayush research articles.

NIIMH houses more than 500 physical manuscripts, alongside the Medical Heritage Museum and Library, featuring rare books and manuscripts dating back to the 15th century AD. The Institute also publishes the Journal of Indian Medical Heritage. Detailed information about the institute can be found at [NIIMH Official Website](http://niimh.nic.in).

In India, there are approximately 58 WHO Collaborating Centres spanning various disciplines of biomedicine and allied sciences. Notably, CCRAS-NIIMH, Hyderabad, joins the ranks as the third WHO Collaborating Centre in the domain of Traditional Medicine, following the Institute for Teaching & Research in Ayurveda, Jamnagar, and the Morarji Desai National Institute of Yoga (MDNIY), New Delhi.

As the first WHO Collaborating Centre for “Fundamental and Literary Research in Traditional Medicine,” NIIMH is tasked with assisting WHO in standardizing terminologies for Ayurveda, Unani, Siddha, and Sowa-Rigpa, and updating the Traditional Medicine Module-II for the Eleventh edition of the International Classification of Diseases (ICD-11). Additionally, the WHO Collaborating Centre will support Member States in developing research methodologies for Traditional Medicine.

This designation is a testament to the leadership and efforts of Vaidya Rajesh Kotecha, Secretary (Ayush), Government of India, and the technical guidance and support from Dr. Pawan Godatwar, Technical Officer, WHO-SEARO, New Delhi, and Dr. Pradeep Kumar Dua, Technical Officer, TM Unit, WHO Headquarters.

The WHO Collaborating Centre for “Fundamental and Literary Research in Traditional Medicine” will be led by Prof. Vaidya Rabinarayan Acharya, Director General, CCRAS, along with a dedicated team including Dr. G. P. Prasad, Assistant Director I/c and Unit Head, Vaidya Saketh Ram Thrigulla, Research Officer (Ayurveda), and Dr. Santosh Mane, Research Officer (Ayurveda), NIIMH, Hyderabad, in coordination with the Literary and Fundamental Research team of CCRAS Headquarters.

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