Accepted Paper:

Policy, pharmaceuticals and tactics: how do people deal with medicines in time of uncertainty in Tigray, Ethiopia  

Author:

Pino Schirripa (Sapienza - University of Rome)

Paper short abstract:

Based on his ethnographic research in Tigray, and utilizing the De Certau’s analytical concept of tactic, the Author aims to analyze which are the everyday tactics that people use to deal with diseases, especially the chronic ones.

Paper long abstract:

After the revolution the new Ethiopian government has adopted a neoliberal politics which has result in a growing presence of private enterprises in all the sectors of the economy. This is also the case of the medical sector where private clinics and private pharmacies are spreading all over the country. Different from other African Contexts the State and its institutions are still strong in Ethiopia. For example the distribution and sale of pharmaceutical drugs is based on dual system: the public and the private one; and there are strong differences between them both in the types of drugs that can be found and in the prices.

The precarious economic situation of many people often makes it difficult for them to get drugs, and at the same time is difficult for them to afford a clinical consultation, because they cannot afford economically it. Then they are forced to rely on pharmacists for a diagnosis.

Based on his ethnographic research in Tigray, and utilizing the De Certau's analytical concept of tactic, the Author aims to analyze which are the everyday tactics that people use to deal with diseases, especially the chronic ones. Tryng to anwer to different questions: in a situation of existential and economic uncertainty , by means of which tactics people manage the diseases? How to handle the trust in the doctors, where it is made difficult by economic uncertainty? What are the alternative within the broader medical system to deal with this?

Panel W132
Uncertainty and trust in medicines and therapeutic techniques