THIRUVANANTHAPURAM : Ayurveda practitioners under AYUSH department in the state have come out against the recent government order prohibiting AYUSH doctors from prescribing medicines as a cure for Covid-19.
The order by AYUSH Secretary Sharmila Mary Joseph -- issued based on a High Court directive -- clearly states that those violating the rules will face strict action. However, this hasn’t gone down well with the AYUSH doctors as the order comes close on the heels of the release of the National Clinical Management Protocol based on Ayurveda and Yoga for Management of Covid-19 by the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare.
The Kerala Government Ayurveda Medical Officer’s Federation (KGAMOF) has informally taken up the matter with the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare.
According to AYUSH medical practitioners, scientific evaluation on the effectiveness of ayurvedic intervention in individuals under quarantine against Covid-19, by the Department of Indian System of Medicine (DISM) in Kerala, has shown promising results. According to them, the report on ‘Ayurvedic Prophylactic Strategy intended for individuals under quarantine against Covid-19’ was submitted to the government on September 22 but no further action has been taken so far.
The preliminary study done under the Amritham programme had found that only 347 among one lakh recipients of preventive medicines -- including those in quarantine, primary and secondary contact lists and persons returning from abroad and other states -- tested positive. Most of the infected had only mild conditions and recovered in four or five days. Later, a detailed study was conducted on around 577 Covid patients and based on this, a report was submitted to the government. However, the government is yet to release the study findings in the public domain, they said.
KGAMOF secretary Durga Prasad said the study showed promising results but the authorities are sitting on the report. “The authorities are denying the benefits of ayurveda to scores of people who believe in this system of medicine. We have given around three representations to the chief minister in the recent past but political will is being torpedoed purposely by bureaucrats,” said Durga Prasad. He said there is no allopathy medicine available for the treatment of Covid-19 and it’s unfair to restrict other forms of medicine. “There is a huge demand for ayurveda medicines in the state. According to our estimates, around 50 lakh people have availed ayurveda treatment for prevention and rehabilitation. Recently, the turnout of patients in the OPs has gone up,” he said.
As part of the Amritham programme, preventive medicines have been given to around 2.5 lakh people in the state till day and according to ayurveda researchers, the conversion percentage per lakh is only 0.342. The Indian System of Medicine, Kerala, and National Ayush Mission, Kerala, have rolled out a slew of programmes for the rehabilitation, mitigation and prevention of Covid-19 through 1,206 Ayur Raksha Clinics across the state.
According to AYUSH medical practitioners, scientific evaluation on the effectiveness of ayurvedic intervention in individuals under quarantine against Covid-19, by the Department of Indian System of Medicine (DISM) in Kerala, has shown promising results.