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MOH provides additional funding to develop TCM sector in Singapore
TO further develop the Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) sector in Singapore, the Ministry of Health (MOH) will set aside additional funding for TCM research, and the skills development of TCM professionals, said Senior Minister of State for Health Chee Hong Tat. He was speaking at the Convocation of the Nanyang Technological University-Beijing University of Chinese Medicine (NTU-BUCM) Double Degree Programme on Wednesday.
A key priority is to help TCM practitioners stay relevant and to encourage continual learning. To this end, MOH will set up a S$5 million TCM Development Grant (TCMDG). Applications for the grant will open from January 2018.
MOH will also provide funding support to TCM service providers to enhance their operational efficiency through adopting information technology (IT) solutions and research and development (R&D) activities.
Additionally, to encourage collaborative research in the industry, a further funding of S$5 million will be provided over the next five years under the Traditional Chinese Medicine Research Grant (TCMRG). This comes atop the S$3 million earmarked for the TCM sector in December 2012 for the same purpose.
MOH said that it has extended the scope of TCMRG beyond clinical research to include research on traditional Chinese exercises such as taiji, and therapies such as TCM tuina that are targeted at promoting health, preventing diseases and improving patient outcomes.
In tandem with the implementation of these two grants, continual TCM education will be made compulsory for those renewing their practising certification. This will align Singapore's TCM registration requirements with those overseas.
The requirement will take effect after the TCM Practitioners' Act has been amended. This will help TCM physicians stay up to date with the latest knowledge, and identify areas where TCM can help support Singapore's health care challenges amid an increasingly ageing population.