Dr. Clovis Akindes chats with a traditional druggist whose wares are displayed in the market place; such items as beaks of birds, skins of mice, horns, and skulls of monkeys. Verso: World Health- November/December 1959. WHO/7109. Africa-From the era of witch doctors to the era of physicians. Africa is moving not only from the pastoral era to that of the engineers, but also from the era of witch doctors to the era of physicians. While the unofficial statistics of the latter suggest, with reason, that Africans have more and more confidence in modern medicine, helped by the endevours of teachers, those who know the continent well say that most Africans, at least in rural areas, go both to physician and witch doctor. One of WHO's aims is to aid governements to educate more health personnel, not only doctors, but also nurses, midwives, health assistants, health educators nutrtionists, sanitary engineers and statistitans, in order to be able to meet the enormous health needs of Africa doctors trained by the Medical School at Dakar. Attached to the service that oraganise campaigns against the sweeping endemic diseases, he is particularly concerned with malaria, but must nevertheless, take care of all the ills that he sees in the course of his daily rounds. Dr. Akindes chats familiarly with a traditional druggist whose wares are displayed on the market place. It isn't necessary to discard everything in the African pharmacopeia. On the other hand, all the trappings of witchcraft can only have a purely psychological influence on the sick man, when they don't make him worst: beaks of birds, skins of mice, skulls of monkeys, snakes.
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World Health Organization; Source: Record; Research date: 20151001