Representational image for Ayurveda | Photo: piqsels.com
Representational image for Ayurveda | Photo: piqsels.com
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New Delhi: A group of researchers associated with Ministry of AYUSH, the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) and the University Grants Commission (UGC) have questioned the usage of only “modern medicines” and the “neglect of Ayurveda” for treatment and prevention of Covid-19.

The researchers, in an article published in the Indian Journal of Medical Ethics, have called the neglect of Ayurveda an “ethical issue”.

“The decision not to include evidence from the Indian AYUSH (Ayurveda, Yoga, Unani, Siddha and Homoeopathy) systems in the search for solutions and management of Covid-19 seems unreasonable and unfair,” the researchers wrote in the paper titled ‘Ayush, modern medicine and the Covid-19 pandemic’.

The authors of the paper are Sarika Chaturvedi from DY Patil Vidyapeeth, Pune; Nandini Kumar, former deputy director general (senior grade), ICMR, and vice-president, Forum for Ethics Review Committees in India; Girish Tillu from Ayush Centre of Excellence; Sharad Deshpande, former professor and head of the Department of Philosophy, University of Pune; and Bhushan Patwardhan, vice-chairman of the UGC, who is also part of the Ayush Centre of Excellence.

Patwardhan and his team are researching whether Ashwagandha can be an alternate to hydroxychloroquine (HCQ) as a potential preventive medicine for Covid.


Also read: Can Dabur Chyawanprash or panchkosha meditation help with Covid? Unusual trials on in India


‘Not in the interests of people or science’

“Currently, only modern medicine therapies are used on an empirical basis, however, the same principle is not considered for the use of AYUSH systems. Appropriate use of evidence is required,” the paper states.

“In the ethics context and in the interest of the larger public good, we suggest the inclusion of simple and safe measures from AYUSH systems in the integrative protocols for prophylaxis and treatment of Covid-19.”

Pointing out that Ayurvedic therapies are known for their immunomodulation and rejuvenation properties, which are important in Covid-19 management, the paper says that a refusal to accept empirical evidence in support of the immunomodulatory potential of Ayurvedic rasayana and other AYUSH measures is “neither in the people’s interest nor that of science, besides being unethical”.

“Several in vitro, animal and clinical studies have demonstrated the immunomodulatory effects of the rasayana drugs such as Ashwagandha (Withania somnifera), Guduchi (Tinospora cordifoloia), Amalaki (Emblica officinale) among many others,” the paper adds.


Also read: Heard Charles took Ayurveda treatment: Minister seeks evidence-based AYUSH drugs for Covid-19


Not giving patients a choice

The paper also states that patients should be informed about all kinds of treatments available for the disease, including alternate Ayurvedic medicines, and that not giving a choice to patients is “unethical”.

“The person’s preference should be respected by providing all the relevant details about available evidence from the prevalent systems of medicine. Not informing patients of established and available alternatives is unethical,” it says.

Currently in India, no hospital asks patients about their choice of therapy if they are Covid-positive. The protocol is to put patients on allopathic medicines.

The team of researchers says this is unfair, and has also questioned the exclusion of AYUSH in policy formulation.

“The procedural conditions to guarantee fair decisions recommended in public health ethics include transparency, reasonable explanation and openness to revision, in addition to adherence to regulation. On this premise, the decision not to include evidence from the Indian AYUSH systems in the search for solutions and management of Covid-19 seems unreasonable and unfair,” the paper argues.

While the paper raises questions, the Narendra Modi government has been trying to propagate the use of Ayurveda, with the PM himself, in one of his addresses to the nation, urging people to follow an AYUSH ministry advisory that suggested various measures to increase immunity.


Also read: After Modi’s appeal, AYUSH ministry gets over 2,000 proposals to tackle Covid-19 pandemic


 

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17 Comments Share Your Views

17 COMMENTS

  1. Efficacy of Herbal extract for testing may differ when separated from co enzimes.Most of the herbs are safe with no side effects.Only chemical drugs require testing for all
    types of impacts and results.Research over all traditional medicines are complete and codified already in the ancient texts.Competent qualified traditional prfessionals can handle Ayur or Siddha treatment successfully. It is all proved over the ages.Water can not be blamed for mirage. But mirage also proves existence of water.Not knowing doesn’t substantiate absence of a matter.Discrimination against traditional medicines and Professionals is now playing Havoc.Nation can’t afford to lose precious time or life any more at this critical juncture especially when modern science is short of suitable drugs.

  2. Efficacy of Herbal extract for testing may differ when out of the elemental herb being separated from co enzimes.Most of the herbs are safe with no side effects.Only chemical drugs require testing for all
    types of impacts and results.RESEARCH over all traditional medicines are complete and codified already in the ancient texts.Competent qualified prfessionals can handle successfully.It is all proved over the ages.Water can not be blamed for mirage. But mirage also proves existence of water.Not knowing doesn’t substantiate absence of a matter.Discrimination against traditional medicines and Professionals is now playing Havoc.Nation can’t afford to lose precious time or life any more at this critical juncture especially when modern science is short of suitable drugs.

  3. About 355 allopathic drugs used over the years are now in banned list.Like aspro anacin brufen etc.What is the credibility of their earlier validation.Never is there a single drug as single cure.Prescriptions combine medicines based on case needs. Also support therapy is prescribed.Ayurvedha is time proved.As established systems traditional medicines have crores of following AND registered competent doctors.Patient should be free to choose his cure.Proof of pudding is in eating not in lab.Lives cannot wait for prolonged periods of testing.When unapproved drugs are used Despite WHO s ADVISORY why not safe alternative systems be applied for real cure. Non believers cannot deny the benefits to the believers.

    • This is misinformation
      Ayurveda is time proved only in the sense that astrology is time proved, meaning it isn’t. Simply being in use does not mean it actually works.
      With modern medicines, there is actual study of side effects and drugs are removed from market as per research.
      Ayurvedic people refuse to do any substantive side effect research claiming they have no side effects, which is false. People have died taking Ayurveda meds and they have not been properly regulated.
      When you talk of about believers and non-believers, you are no longer in the land of science or proof, but in blind faith.

      • Ayurvedha is regulated by now by the centre and states.Hundreds of Government colleges are there. Lakhs of competent registered doctors and crores of followings are there now in India.Please go through Ayush portal.Without results people do not risk health and life.Some people come to Ayurvedha or Siddha as a last resort and blame for the failures.Steroids and Antibiotics have played havoc in many cases. I myself was a victim of penicillin once. Still every year die due to TB in India despite so called test proven drugs in allopathy. Ancient scientific texts cannot be brushed aside as mere beliefs. Indian astronomy is proved by the Almanac where many events are forecast centuries ahead and occur in our own days. Astrology is part of our Astronomy.The science cannot be blamed for misinterpretations and wrong applications.It will not be fully successful for material life.Quacks exist in every field including IT.It’s the order of the day to reject anything Indian.Modern science is good and beneficial but has limitations.Traditional science is equally superior

      • Ayurvedha and Siddha are by now regulated by both the centre and states. Hundreds of Government colleges are there. Lakhs of competent registered doctors and crores of followings prevail. Please go through Ayush portal. Without results people do not risk health and life. Some people come to Ayurvedha or Siddha as a last resort and blame for the failures. Steroids and Antibiotics have played havoc in many cases. I myself was a victim of penicillin once. Still every year die due to TB in India despite so called test proven drugs in allopathy. Ancient scientific texts cannot be brushed aside as mere wrong beliefs. Likewise Indian astronomy is proved by the Almanac where many events are forecast centuries ahead and occur in our own days. Astrology is part of our Astronomy. The science cannot be blamed for misinterpretations and wrong applications. Predictions will not be fully successful for material purposes. Quacks exist in every field including IT. It’s the order of the day to reject anything Indian. Modern science is good and beneficial but has limitations. Traditional science is equally superior. Nothing should be thrusted upon.

        • There is no such thing as traditional science and modern science. Science is science. It’s methods of discovering the truths of Nature have evolved over last 400-500 years. Scientists have made mistakes but the process involves self-correction by learning from wrong deductions. There is no Bible book for science. Anyone can challenge and disprove existing beliefs in science. In fact challenging is welcomed because it makes the scientific approach more robust. Science can never say something is true. It can only say that something is false.

          So stop suffixing the word science to ayush. If you want to call these systems as science then you should be ready to let scientific methods to evaluate your theories and medications. Until then consider your Ayush systems as traditional methods. There is no ban on public trying herbals as remedies. However it will not be evidence based medicine. So don’t claim that your method is superior and that you have the “cure”.

  4. I am requesting govt to tackle covid positive pt by ayush doctor in Ayush hospital then we will prove ayush is ethical scientific

  5. Print, your title should be: AYUSH researchers call for Ayurveda to be used.

    It is important to say AYUSH Researchers, not simply researchers, because they have very poor reputation as researchers because they have not discovered anything so far.

  6. Better ,action must have been taken by now,rather mudslingering,before it is too late.Even now Ayush must come out with preparations for immunity boosting.Act immediately.

  7. Almost choked whilst i chortled on my drink after reading the demands of them snake oil salesman..

    There’s a reason why homeopathy, ayurveda and unani, and others like it are called alternative medicine..coz medicine works and this nonsensical BS doesn’t..

    If as someone here put it, “people are being forced to go to allopathic centres”…my retort would be.. Okay, stay at home and practice aligning your chakras, chanting your rhymes, cleansing your spiritual black holes, and conforming to the synergies of the souls of the ancients..! Leave the medical treatments for those who will need it more than you.

    Peace.
    PS: I know this isn’t a social media platform, but the fact that this was carried as legitimate news, was disturbing.

  8. the best scenario is let Govt. establish AYUSH covid hospital and then let AYUSH physicians treat from the starting till the end of treatment. Then allopaths wont complain and AYUSH physicians can try all their protocols. NO system of medicine would like any others intereference obviously. AYUSH ministry please establish AYUSH Covid care hospitals and then let citizens make the choice.

  9. Dear Sir, Indian government has approved Ayush system for treatment of all diseases. Now Corona has no cure in Allopathy but everyone is compulsively taken to allopathy hospital for treatment. Ayush people are permitted to treat all diseases except Corona. But in practice we have seen that Ayush medicine protect and cure Corona better than Allopathy. Inspite of knowing the truth Ayush doctors association is not fighting in the courts to get an order for getting permissions for protecting people from Corona. Now Prime Minister is also telling about giving boost to Indian products. Ayush is full of Indian products and still we are submitting ourselves to the IMA. Is it not high time to act all Ayush practitioners and their associations to come together to protect our country and people from Corona? Let government allot 100 corona people to each systems and prove the result. All Corona patients should be volunteering for a particular system. Than only Ayush will win. Our country and people will be saved. Ayush people have 100 percent faith in their system.

    • If there is no treatment in modern medicine, there is no treatment, period.
      Modern medicine is just any medicine with evidence that it works.
      So far, nothing in Ayurveda worked practically by studies.
      If you think not, show me studies from international journals, not just AYUSH publications.

    • “But in practice we have seen that Ayush medicine protect and cure Corona better than Allopathy”

      Where is the proof? Where is the scientific evidence? Have any papers been published on reputed journals ? Is the data open to all and available for review ?

  10. Cut all the bluster, and come back with solid clinical and scientific evidence. You won’t have to make all this noise to get heard.

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