CE Pricing / Flex Credit

Save with tiered CE Pricing
Starts at $9.98 per contact hour
Min. Hours $$/Hr
4 hours $8.98
8 hours $7.98
12 hours $6.98
20 hours $5.98
30 hours $4.98

Global Healing Systems-An Introduction

1.0 Contact Hours
Target Audience: Nurses, healthcare professionals, and interested individuals
Purpose/Goal: The outcome of this course is for the learner to describe the concepts of global and traditional healing systems, including how they differ from conventional (allopathic) medicine systems.
Add to Cart

Global healing traditions date back thousands of years and have a long and rich history. They reflect the specific and unique characteristics of the culture, history, philosophy, and availability of resources in different parts of the world. Global healing traditions involves a combination of health practices, approaches, knowledge, and beliefs that address healing and wellness while using ceremonies, plants, animals, or mineral-based medicines, energetic therapies, and/or physical/hands-on techniques. These traditional healing systems provide the primary form of health care for the majority of the world’s population. Understanding the various global healing practices provides health care professionals with improved knowledge and skills to support their clients who use various traditional healing practices and techniques.

Upon completion of the course, you will be able to do the following:

  • Describe the foundation and prevalence of traditional healing systems.
  • Compare and contrast traditional healing philosophies with those of conventional medicine.
  • Discuss the differences in becoming a traditional healer versus a conventional medicine healer
  • Identify the need for collaboration and integration between allopathic and traditional forms of healing.

Traditional medicine has a long and rich history. Traditional medicine refers to healing systems that have been used by various ethnic populations and countries for thousands of years—long before the arrival of allopathic, or contemporary, Western medicine (also called biomedicine or scientific medicine). Traditional medicine evolved from the specific and unique characteristics of the culture, history, philosophy, and availability of resources in different parts of the world. It involves a combination of health practices, approaches, knowledge, and beliefs that address healing and wellness while using ceremonies, plants, animal, or mineral-based medicines, energetic therapies, and/or physical/hands-on techniques (First Nations Health Authority, 2017; Washington State University, 2017). Ancient Mesopotamia, which is the modern-day Middle East, is where the oldest texts about traditional medicine were found in 2100 BCE. There is evidence in clay tablets that sorcery, prayer, and medicinal plants as well as more conventional forms of medicine (such as bandaging and washing) were used (National Center for Farmworker Health [NCFH], 2011).


Today, approximately 65% to 85% of the world’s population relies on traditional medicine as their primary form of health care (Ahlberg, 2017; Center for Health and Healing, 2013; NCFH, 2011; World Health Organization [WHO], 2001). According to the WHO (2013), traditional medicine is defined as the sum total of the knowledge, skills, and practices based on the theories, beliefs, and experiences indigenous to different cultures, whether explicable or not. Traditional medicine is used in the maintenance of health as well as in the prevention, diagnosis, improvement or treatment of physical and mental illness.

Globally, traditional medicine is either the mainstay of healthcare delivery for billions of people, or it serves as a complement to it. In some countries, traditional medicine or nonconventional medicine may also be called folk medicine, holistic medicine, or complementary and alternative medicine (CAM) (NCFH, 2011; WHO, 2013).

Traditional medicine is found in almost every country in the world and includes the following for treating, diagnosing, or preventing illness (NCFH, 2011; WHO, 2001):

  • diverse health practices, approaches, knowledge, and beliefs incorporating plant, animal, and/or mineral-based medicines
  • spiritual therapies
  • manual techniques
  • exercises (applied singly or in combination)

According to the WHO (2001), traditional medicine and the incredibly diverse range of practices it encompasses makes it difficult to describe, especially in a global context. Often, the extensive knowledge of traditional medicine practitioners is passed down orally from generation to generation, it can be located within families specializing in specific treatments, or it can be taught in officially recognized universities. It can be very restricted (geographically), or it can be found in diverse regions of the world. Most commonly, a medical system is called “traditional” when it is practiced within the country of origin.

Complete the course post exam (CE Test) with a score of 80% or greater. Complete all fields of the course evaluation form. Certificate of Completion is provided once the course post exam is passed per criteria above.

  • American Board of Managed Care Nursing
  • ANCC - American Nurses Credentialing Center
  • AOTA - American Occupational Therapy Association
  • ASWB - Association of Social Work Boards
  • California Board of Registered Nursing
  • California Department of Health, Aid, and Technician Certification Section
  • District of Columbia Board of Nursing
  • Florida Board of Nursing
  • Florida Board of Nursing - Certified Nursing Assistants
  • Florida Board of Respiratory Care
  • Florida Council of Dietetics and Nutrition
  • Florida Council of Licensed Midwifery
  • NAADAC - The National Association of Alcohol and Drug Abuse Counselors


Practice Level:


Content Focus:

Domain of OT

Course Expires:

February 02, 2021

  • Cyndie Koopsen, RN, BSN, MBA, HNB-BC, RN-BC, HWNC-BC
  • Caroline Young, MPH
Jurisdictional Requirements:

Continuing education (CE) licensing requirements vary by jurisdiction, are not well defined, and may change. These CE requirements may vary in terms of the number of hours required to the types of courses that must be taken. ALLEGRA Learning Solutions, LLC recommends you contact your licensing board or accrediting organization for the latest continuing education requirements of your state or territory. Compliance with CE requirements is the responsibility of the individual health care provider. Health care providers must understand the CE requirements in their jurisdictions, and be sure they are up-to-date on any rule changes that affect their license. For further information, please see our Accreditation Information.

Accommodations for Disabilities:

Every effort will be made to accommodate your special needs. To request accommodations, please contact us.

Conflicts of Interest and Relevant Financial Relationships:

The authors/planning committee members have no conflicts of interests or relevant financial relationships to declare relevant to this activity.

Commercial Support:

No commercial support has been received for this activity.

Non-endorsement of products:

Accreditation refers to recognition of continuing nursing education only and does not imply ALLEGRA Learning Solutions, LLC approval or endorsement of any commercial product.

Off-label Use of Products:

None of the authors intend to discuss off-label uses of drugs, mechanical devices, biologics, or diagnostics not approved by the FDA for use in the United States.