Professionally documented empirical evidence on medicinal plants: the importance of traditional knowledge as a reliable source of evidence for regulation and practice
Traditional plant medicines are key therapeutics in professional herbal practice and self-care. Despite their prevalence there is no health policy in New Zealand to formally acknowledge them as therapeutic products due to presumed lack of evidence on their effectiveness. This regulatory situation impacts on consumer choice and public safety. The newly developed Historical Assessment Tool provides a systematic approach to collate inter-generational clinical evidence on plant medicines for regulatory purposes. This broadens their evidence base and revolutionizes the way we look at evidence.