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TCM Rome Declaration

The Fifteenth World Congress of Chinese Medicine, hosted by the World Federation of Chinese Medicine Societies, was held in Rome, Italy on November 17-18, 2018. Representatives of Chinese medicine organizations, from the countries and regions across five continents, discussed the status of Chinese medicine development internationally. Around the theme of "Chinese Medicine going global to build a shared future for health and well-being", they announced and proposed the following.
Originating in China, Chinese Medicine is a medical science that explores human life, health, disease prevention, treatment and rehabilitation. Its scope encompasses the therapeutic properties of herbs, acupuncture, massage, diet, and qigong. For over two millennia, Chinese Medicine has made outstanding contributions to the prosperity of the Chinese nation but also has had a positive impact on the progress of world civilization. Chinese Medicine has been adopted throughout the world, and now can be seen in one hundred and eighty-three countries. As a result, Chinese Medicine has been enriched and developed to play a significant role in the global maintenance of human health.  
Chinese Medicine upholds the unity of health and nature. It is a unique medical system with comprehensive theory and technology that grasps the connection between the principles of a healthy life and the evolution of disease. Chinese Medicine embodies individualized differentiation of syndrome and symptoms, balanced prevention and treatment principles, personalized treatment methods with diversified interventions, and an orientation to natural medication. It is characterized by clinical efficacy, medication with few side effects, flexible service modes, affordable cost, huge innovation potential and room for development.
As the spectrum of known human diseases expands, as medical models and health concepts change, and as medically-caused epidemics become more common, Chinese Medicine offers both invaluable thinking and established methodology to address our health problems and diseases. Its safety and efficacy are increasingly favored worldwide, having been recognized by the people and governments of many countries to become an important force in the field of health prevention and treatment globally. 
The international adoption and development of Chinese Medicine have opened new opportunities. Economic globalization, recognition of the value of cultural diversity, and mutual learning among human civilizations are greater now than ever before. We recognize that we all share a global destiny and that together we must build a global community to shape it. The Chinese Medicine profession acknowledges and answers this challenge. We affirm the need for a more extensive and comprehensive dissemination of Chinese Medicine internationally, the continuous improvement of the quality and level of health care provided, and a wider recognition of the scientific basis and treatment efficacy of Chinese Medicine. To achieve these, the recognition and adoption of Chinese Medicine within the medical and health systems of all countries and regions need to be vigorously promoted, as its role in serving the health of the global population continues to develop. The international spread and development of Chinese Medicine has entered a new historical period with new challenges creating new requirements for development.
We, the Fifteenth World Congress of Chinese Medicine, call upon all Chinese Medicine professional bodies and individual practitioners to acknowledge our inheritance and our obligation to it, as well as to maintain the integrity of Chinese Medicine theories and principles as we innovate and develop. In this way, we will continue to promote Chinese Medicine globally for the benefit of all.
We call upon all Chinese Medicine practitioners and professional bodies to adopt the following principles and practices:
1. Respond to the goal of "universal health coverage" and support the traditional medicine strategies by the World Health Organization, making full use of Chinese Medicine, and thereby contributing to the promotion of human health and the realization of a better vision of health for all. 
2. Pursue legislation in all countries to ensure the legal status of Chinese Medicine and Chinese Medicine practitioners, to protect Chinese Medicine professional intellectual property, and to instate Chinese Medicine into medical service and insurance systems. 
3. Promote the standardization of Chinese Medicine and the establishment of an international Chinese Medicine standard, including diagnosis and treatment, while constantly improving the level of Chinese Medicine.  
4. Elevate the academic and applied studies of Chinese Medicine, respecting traditional knowledge and encouraging innovation and the application of new knowledge in order to bring the full utilization of Chinese Medicine’s unique advantages in the prevention, treatment and rehabilitation of common and complex diseases. 
5. Strengthen Chinese Medicine education and training at higher education institutions, emphasizing the evaluation of Chinese Medicine practitioners and optimizing the practice to meet the needs of global health services. 
6. Engage in the dissemination of Chinese Medicine knowledge and cultural value in the development of the social environment to integrate Chinese Medicine with the local culture in different countries. 
7. Boost international Chinese Medicine communication to promote the academic strength of Chinese Medicine, to advocate for interprofessional practice and better integration of Chinese Medicine and modern medicine, to endorse multidisciplinary research, and to actively participate in the improvement of global health governance.  
8. Support the “Belt & Road” initiative by the Chinese government to maximize the role of Chinese Medicine in improving people´s well-being and promoting international communication, so as to contribute to the creation of a global human health community. 
9. Fortify the international solidarity of Chinese Medicine practitioners and professional bodies to build consensus, cohesion, inclusivity, and unity around common goals.
10. Formalize the international recognition of Chinese Medicine by celebrating the October 11th each year as World Chinese Medicine Day.
Health is a common pursuit for all mankind. The world needs and benefits from Chinese Medicine. We, the Fifteenth World Congress of Chinese Medicine in Rome, call upon all Chinese Medicine practitioners and professional bodies across the globe to join in this collective effort of ushering in a new era of benefiting human health with Chinese Medicine.
Fifteenth World Congress of Chinese Medicine
November 18, 2018 in Rome

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