Govt conducts Covid-19 research on local herbs

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THE government has revealed that it is conducting research to find out if local herbs can help in the fight against the coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic which has killed four and infected 56 people in the country.

This comes as a concoction known as Covid Organics (CVO), a form of herbal tea, is reportedly curing Covid-19 patients in Madagascar.

Health and Child Care minister Obadiah Moyo told journalists at a post-cabinet briefing on Thursday that the research was being done by the Natural Therapeutic Council.

“We as Zimbabwe are also carrying out research in our Covid-19 response. Our research projects are under the National Institute of Health Research working together with the Research Council of Zimbabwe.

“The most interesting one is that we want to look at the effects of our herbs here in Zimbabwe. We have the Natural Therapeutic Council also working on that. You have heard about what Madagascar has come up with. We have teams here who are also working quietly on these issues and we are hoping to come up with results,” Moyo said.

The health minister said the government was ready to support all who want to carry out research on the pandemic.
“It’s a very important component in our case management. I would also like to indicate that we have many experts in Zimbabwe and they are involved in research on Covid-19.

“Some of our research is on the efficiency of our testing systems, the Rapid Diagnostic Tests (RDTs),” he added.
Meanwhile, the Zimbabwe National Traditional Healers Association (Zinatha) has sensationally claimed that the country has the herbs that can treat Covid-19.

Zinatha secretary for education Prince Sibanda recently told the Daily News on Sunday that Madagascar’s herbal tea is evidence that there is need to develop indigenous knowledge of medicine rather than rely on Western ideas all the time.

“In Zimbabwe we do have herbs such as Murumanya or Muremberembe (Shona) isihaqa (Ndebele) that can effectively treat coronavirus.

“We are rich in herbs with over 5 000 of them in Zimbabwe. The World Health Organisation (WHO) proved that 80 percent of Africa relies on herbal medicine… Why not promote the 80 percent rather waiting for the West?

“Let’s integrate the two systems of health delivery so that we will be safe …we should not concentrate on one side. Zinatha should be incorporated into rapid response and research teams so that we can help contain this pandemic,” Sibanda said.

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