Larger role seen for traditional medicines


BEIJING: Chinese and foreign politicians and health experts called for concerted efforts to study the clinical outcomes of the use of traditional medicines against the novel coronavirus to enable traditional therapies to play a larger role in the battle against the COVID-19 pandemic.
The joint initiative also stressed offering more support to individuals and social organizations specializing in traditional medicines and striving to integrate them with regular healthcare services and community-level virus control efforts.
It was announced by Yu Wenming, head of the National Administration of Traditional Chinese Medicine, at a forum held in Beijing last week.
Foreign dignitaries and officials from 28 countries and regions, as well as experts from the World Health Organization, attended the event via video link.
“We support using traditional medicines-with traditional Chinese medicine as a representative-to prevent and control the pandemic and safeguard the health of people,” Yu said. “An open and inclusive mindset is needed now more than ever.”
Zhang Boli, president of Tianjin University of Traditional Chinese Medicine, said TCM had been a vital tool in suppressing the domestic outbreak because it prevented mild and moderate cases from worsening into severe infections.
“A serious COVID-19 patient would cost tens of thousands of yuan, while a mild case only costs less than 10,000 yuan ($1,520),” he said. “TCM’s role in reducing the rates of severe infections is of critical clinical value.” Huang Luqi, president of the China Academy of Chinese Medical Sciences, said nearly 92 percent of COVID-19 patients in China had undergone TCM treatment, with the overall efficacy exceeding 90 percent.
One of the most popular TCM drugs, Huashi Baidu granules, which stems from a centuries-old prescription, was given market approval by the top drug regulator on March 2.
– The Daily Mail-China Daily News exchange item