The Department of Yoga Therapy and Training of MDNIY has been designated as WHO Collaborating Centre in Traditional Medicine for a period of four years recently. This is the result of the efforts initiated in 2008 when MDNIY started collaborating with WHO Country Office under the biennium programme of traditional medicine and developed Yoga Resource Centre and brought out disease-specific booklets of Yogic interventions for healthcare.
WHO does not have its own institutional network but identifies institutions from member countries to work in specific areas of health and designate them as WHO Collaborating Centres. There are 21 WHO Collaborating Centres for Traditional Medicine across the globe, but none in India in spite of having a large number of AYUSH institutions and 32 Collaborating Centres for Modern Medicine. The matter was taken up by the Department of AYUSH with WHO. Two AYUSH institutions namely Morarji Desai National Institute of Yoga, New Delhi and Institute of Postgraduate Teaching & Research in Ayurveda, Jamnagar, Gujarathave now been designated as WHO collaborating centres in traditional medicine.
WHO collaborating centres are institutions such as research institutes, parts of universities or academies, which are designated by the Director-General of WHO to carry out activities in support of the Organization`s programmes. Currently, there are over 800 WHO collaborating centres in over 80 Member States working with WHO on areas such as nursing, occupational health, communicable diseases, nutrition, mental health, chronic diseases and health technologies all over the world.
The network of 23 designated WHO Collaborating Centres for Traditional Medicine is meant to assist in implementing WHO strategies and resolutions relating to traditional medicine. The priority area of work for WHO Collaborating Centres of Traditional Medicine is to generate evidence-based information on the safety, quality, and cost-effectiveness of traditional medicine products and therapies.