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Gwen pushes for home remedies, traditional medicine vs COVID-19

By: Rosalie Abatayo - Reporter/CDN Digital | May 03,2020 - 04:20 PM
Cebu Governor Gwendolyn Garcia has recommended home remedies to boost the immune system and help combat the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19). | Contributed photo

Cebu Governor Gwendolyn Garcia has recommended home remedies to boost the immune system and help combat the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19). | Contributed photo

CEBU CITY, Philippines — While no vaccine against the new coronavirus infection (COVID-19) is available yet, salabat (ginger tea), natural calamansi juice and other home remedies may be among the public’s defenses against the dreaded infection.

Cebu Governor Gwendolyn Garcia has advised local health officers to promote home remedies to boost the immune systems of their constituents as a means to combat COVID-19.

While Garcia urged the municipal and city health officers to proceed with active case finding of influenza-like illnesses and probable COVID-19 patients in their jurisdictions, Garcia said the doctors would be doing them no harm if they would implore traditional medicine in boosting their “fighting chance” against the virus, especially for those who had not developed symptoms yet.

“Mas maayo nga makit-an nato ang positive nga asymptomatic kay duna tay paagi unsaon nato. It is best to be able to detect them at the earliest [because] that is when they will have the fighting chance against the virus,” Garcia said.

(It is better if we find out who are positive of the virus who are asymptomatic because we have a way to fight it. It is best to be able to detect them at the earliest [because] that is when they will have a fighting chance against the virus.)

“What do we do? Let’s build up immunity with available [resources]. Naa ra ug dili gani over the counter, over the gripo, kay mag-init ra man ka og tubig. Balik ta adto  sa tuob-tuob. Mao man nay naagian sa atong mga lolo ug lola,” the governor added.

(What do we do? Let us build up immunity with available [resources]. It is available and it is not over the counter, over the faucet, because one will just boil it with hot water. Let us go back to “tuob-tuob”. That is what we had gone through with our lolo and lola.)

Tuob is a traditional Filipino healing practice where a sick person hovers over a steam from heated pots while rubbing essential oils.

“Balik ta sa kinaraan, kaya man na. Dili man na kinahanglan og special equipment ug masabtan na sa atong kaigsuonan ngadto sa bukid. Kahibaw na sila unsa atong gistorya nga mag-lâgâ tag luy-a,” Garcia said.

(Let us go back to the old way. We can do that. We do not need special equipment and our brothers and sisters in the mountains can understand this process. They know what we are talking about when we say boil water with ginger in it.)

READ: Gwen: COVID-19 breaches CPDRC

Dr. Jaime Bernadas, Department of Health in Central Visayas regional director, said during the meeting with Garcia and the MHOs (municipal health officers) and CHOs (city health officers) on Thursday, April 30, 2020 that he has no objection to using traditional or alternative medicine.

Bernadas said he was even using 20 pieces of calamansi as his daily dose of vitamin C.

The governor said the home remedies were even being used for the 17 inmates of the Cebu Provincial Detention and Rehabilitation Center (CPDRC) who had been tested positive for the virus.

“Amo na sila ron gipa-steam inhalation, gitagaan og mega doses of vitamin C, B complex, salabat with honey kung naa, ug lemonsito,” Garcia said.

(We are now having them undergo steam inhalation. We also give them mega doses of vitamin C, B complex, ginger tea with honey and calamansi.)/dbs

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