Learning the Use of Medicinal Herbs in Phytotherapy: A Tripartite Approach for Pharmacy Students

Wai-Keung Chui, Giorgia Pastorin, Aik-Jiang Lau


Herbal remedies constitute an important component of any healthcare system. Increasing demand for the use of herbal remedies and reports of harm caused by inappropriate use are not uncommon. Pharmacists are well positioned to offer advice on the use of drugs and herbs; therefore natural products must be included in the Pharmacy curriculum. At the Department of Pharmacy in the National University of Singapore, instruction on natural products is delivered based on a tripartite approach. In the module, students learn about the constituents of the herbs, the quality assurance of the herbal products and the evidence-based efficacy of herbal remedies. Eighty four percent of students who gave feedback agreed that the tripartite approach had allowed them to gain a holistic appreciation of the use of medicinal herbs. The majority of students agreed that the module had provided an enriching learning experience (88.4%) and stimulated self-directed study on the subject (95.7%).


Herbs, herbal remedies, natural products, phytotherapy

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