The World Health Organization Collaborating Centre for Traditional Medicine at the University of Illinois at Chicago, College of Pharmacy (WHO CC/TRM, UIC) is one of 21 such designated centers in the World.
Historically, the WHO’s programme in traditional medicine evolved from a 1972 held at the WHO headquarters to develop training programs, research and studies that could improve the services of traditional birth attendants; and a subsequent series of working group meetings to include other traditional medical practices. In 1976, a working group was established for the promotion and development of traditional medicine, which ultimately led to the formal establishment, at the end of that decade, of a permanent WHO Programme in Traditional Medicine (WHO TRM) to be executed in close collaboration with WHO regional offices, with Dr R.H. Bannerman serving as the first Programme Manager.
UIC’s first participation in the programmatic activities of the WHO TRM was in November 1978, when Dr. Norman R. Farnsworth was invited to participate and served as Rapporteur at the invitation of Dr. Bannerman at a working group meeting entitled, “Consultation on Potentials for use of Plants Indicated by Traditional Medicine in Cancer Therapy”. Other programmatic activities ensued, including a consultative site visit to UIC College of Pharmacy by Dr. Bannerman (1979, Figure 1), culminating in the designation of UIC College of Pharmacy as a World Health Organization Collaborating Centre for Traditional Medicine (WHO CC/TRM, UIC), shortly after the establishment of this network by the WHO.