Qatar has recently launched into a project of modernization extending into the health care sector. Sponsored by a UREP grant from the Qatar National Research Fund, our team of student and faculty researcher from Weill Cornell Medical College in Qatar pursued the following questions: What cultural and regional practices, specific to Qatar, preceded this modern system? Has the hospital and more “standard” western system of medicine completely replaced these practices? Do they conflict or are they complementary? Has the perception of traditional medicine undergone significant change in the local community? Are these practices in danger of extinction, and what will be lost if they are?
The aim of our research was to investigate and document the local traditions of healing in Qatar. We wanted to find out what the local traditions are, how they emerged, how they are practiced, and whether they are being passed on.