The Ibn Sina Institute of Tibb, a Public Benefit Organization (PBO 930008393) was established in 1997 with the vision of assisting in the provision of effective, affordable healthcare in our country. The Institute is academically supported by Hamdard University Pakistan both Jamia Hamdard and Aligarh University from India, as well as local tertiary institutions.

    Recognition of Tibb was achieved when Unani-Tibb was approved as the eleventh modality of the Allied Health Professions Council of South Africa (AHPCSA) in August 2001. On the 14th September 2007, the formal register for Tibb was officiated, thereby enabling Tibb doctors to register with the Council.

    Among the objectives of the Institute is the practice and training of Tibb, more specifically the training of Tibb doctors, and the introduction of Tibb concepts to other healthcare practitioners. To date, over 150 doctors have graduated from the University of the Western Cape’s School of Natural Medicine with Postgraduate diplomas as well as Undergraduate degrees in Tibb. To facilitate the practical training of Tibb doctors, Tibb Treatment Centers have been established in Cape Town. These centers, in addition to providing subsidized treatment to patients from surrounding communities, also conduct research into the effectivity of the Tibb modality.

    Another important mission of the Institute is assisting government in primary healthcare by empowering individuals to take responsibility for their own health. This has been implemented through a specialised Tibb Lifestyle Advisor programme aimed at addressing diet, environment and lifestyle in chronic and acute care. This programme has been well received by the City of Joburg’s Department of Health with the training of clinic health promoters and Ward Based Outreach Teams affiliated to 126 clinics. This initiative further includes several workshops on the role of the Tibb Six Lifestyle Factors in health promotion and in the management of illness conditions.

    Having journeyed through a rich history, Tibb enjoys all the benefits of being tested through the ages. It is a comprehensive healing system based on scientific data that takes every aspect of the individual into account. Its philosophy is an assimilation of the thoughts of Hippocrates the ‘father' of Western medicine, Galen, and Ibn Sina, all of whom remain pioneers in the evolution of medicine. Their philosophies dispelled the magical and superstitious atmosphere that dominated the healing arts for centuries and paved the way for medicine as we know it today.

    Until the late 19th Century, the Tibb system of medicine was practiced in most parts of the world as Western herbal medicine, Greco-Arab medicine, Unani Medicine and Unani-Tibb – which literally translates as ‘Greek Medicine’, in recognition of Hippocrates.

    Tibb is perfectly suited to address the health issues in South Africa because it integrates conventional, Western medicine with traditional approaches, thereby offering a comprehensive system that is accessible to all individuals across the spectrum in our country. Tibb is not merely a medical system, it is a lifestyle – a lifestyle that combines ‘a Science of Medicine with the Art of Care’.

    For more information on the Ibn Sina Institute of Tibb visit

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