Effectiveness of integrated health systems in Africa: a systematic review

Ampomah, Irene G., Malau-Aduli, Bunmi S., Malau-Aduli, Aduli E.O., and Emeto, Theophilus I. (2020) Effectiveness of integrated health systems in Africa: a systematic review. Medicina, 56 (6). 271.

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Background and objective: Traditional medicine (TM) was integrated into health systems in Africa due to its importance within the health delivery setup in fostering increased health care accessibility through safe practices. However, the quality of integrated health systems in Africa has not been assessed since its implementation. The objective of this paper was to extensively and systematically review the effectiveness of integrated health systems in Africa. Materials and Methods: A systematic literature search was conducted from October, 2019 to March, 2020 using Ovid Medline, Scopus, Emcare, Web of Science, Cumulative Index to Nursing and Allied Health (CINAHL), and Google Scholar, in order to retrieve original articles evaluating the integration of TM into health systems in Africa. A quality assessment of relevant articles was also carried out using the Quality Assessment Tool for Studies with Diverse Designs (QATDSS) critical appraisal tool. Results: The results indicated that the formulation and execution of health policies were the main measures taken to integrate TM into health systems in Africa. The review also highlighted relatively low levels of awareness, usage, satisfaction, and acceptance of integrated health systems among the populace. Knowledge about the existence of an integrated system varied among study participants, while satisfaction and acceptance were low among orthodox medicine practitioners. Health service users’ satisfaction and acceptance of the practice of an integrated health system were high in the countries assessed. Conclusion: The review concluded that existing health policies in Africa are not working, so the integration of TM has not been successful. It is critical to uncover the barriers in the health system by exploring the perceptions and experiences of stakeholders, in order to develop solutions for better integration of the two health systems.

Item ID: 63360
Item Type: Article (Research - C1)
ISSN: 1648-9144
Keywords: traditional medicine; integration; review; public health; health system
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Copyright Information: © 2020 by the authors. Licensee MDPI, Basel, Switzerland. This article is an open access article distributed under the terms and conditions of the Creative Commons Attribution (CC BY) license (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/).
Date Deposited: 10 Jun 2020 03:02
FoR Codes: 42 HEALTH SCIENCES > 4203 Health services and systems > 420310 Health surveillance @ 50%
42 HEALTH SCIENCES > 4203 Health services and systems > 420311 Health systems @ 50%
SEO Codes: 92 HEALTH > 9205 Specific Population Health (excl. Indigenous Health) > 920503 Health Related to Specific Ethnic Groups @ 50%
92 HEALTH > 9204 Public Health (excl. Specific Population Health) > 920499 Public Health (excl. Specific Population Health) not elsewhere classified @ 50%
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