The Union Ministry of Ayurveda, Yoga and Naturopathy, Unani, Siddha, and Homoeopathy (AYUSH) will develop an ‘AYUSH Grid’, connecting alternative medicine centres nationwide.
The network will make it easier to assess the efficacy of alternative medicine systems, enabling AYUSH hospitals and laboratories to share data such as case studies and observation reports. This will be used to create comprehensive data analytics providing assessments of AYUSH practices to reflect the existing body of evidence.
“While robust research is being conducted into Ayurveda, the problem arises in implementation of integrative medicine at the level of public health,” said Dr Rajesh Kotecha, secretary of the Union AYUSH Ministry. “This is because Ayurveda is still not accepted as a science by the Allopathic community. Ayush Grid is expected to take care of these gaps.”
Such a move had previously been suggested by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, who stated the need to homogenise the AYUSH sector in India. Moves towards the same have been taking with the incorporation of digital technology into the sector, with the Union AYUSH Ministry and the Union Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology signing a memorandum of understanding.
“This will be beneficial for all stakeholders of AYUSH including citizens of the country and in turn will help to achieve various national and international goals in the healthcare sector,” said Dr Kotecha.
Sanchit Sharma, executive director of Ayurvedic medicines producer Aimil Pharmaceuticals, praised the move. “This will instil confidence among people and bring transparency and accountability in the sector,” he said, adding that he saw it as a way of helping the Centre to achieve universal health coverage.
Promoting AYUSH has been prioritised by the Modi government since first coming to power in 2014. The Prime Minister recently announced the creation of 12,500 AYUSH centres, 4,000 of which will be established this year. The AYUSH grid could go towards strengthening relations between practitioners and citizens.