Every country has its own medicinal system known as traditional or indigenous medicine this plays a major role in their primary health care of this country. Sri Lanka has a rich traditional medicinal system practiced from the time of king Rawana. Before the arrival of Ayurveda from North India to Sri Lanka there had been an indigenous system of medicine practiced from time immemorial in the island. This view has been proved with the invention of historical evidence such as excavation of ruins of an ancient hospital in Mihintale. This empirical indigenous system of medicine had several prominent disciplines practiced by different traditions (Guru Kula). Out of these expertises Kadumbindum, Sarpavisha, Unmada, Akshiroga, Gedivanplika, Vidumpillissum, Devumpillissum, Mandam vedakama etc became very much popular among people of the Island. With the propagation of Ayurveda in Sri Lanka after arrival of Mahinda thero the indigenous system of medicine started to be blended with the major theories of Ayurveda. Therefore the indigenous medicine practiced today in the island is an amalgamation of indigenous system of Ayurveda.
Indigenous system is very rich in unique medical preparations, prescriptions, pharmaceutical products, techniques of diagnosis, therapeutic techniques etc. the purpose of incorporation of the subject of Desheeya Chikitsa is to protect, preserve, nature, develop and propagate the indigenous system in Sri Lanka. Thereby it is aimed at getting maximum benefit out of the people of the island.
The aims and objectives of academic unit are;
- To impart detail knowledge pertaining to the various indigenous medical expertise to the students.
- To facilitate student to practice indigenous medical expertise and utilize local natural resources in alleviating disease and prevent them.
- To enable student to understand and to practice indigenous diagnosing techniques and therapeutic techniques.
- To develop the skills of the students to prepare Desheeya Kasaya (Decoction), Guli (Pills), Churna (Powders), Taila (Oils), Patthu (Paste), Mallum etc.