How the first COVID-19 death in Madagascar has marred its herbal remedy’s claim to fame

How the first COVID-19 death in Madagascar has marred its herbal remedy’s claim to fame

Madagascar, on Sunday, announced the first ever COVID-19 related death nearly two months after the pandemic was first recorded in the country. The deceased who already had some health conditions was a 57-year-old medical worker who suffered from diabetes and high blood pressure, the national COVID-19 taskforce said.

“It is with great sadness that we have to share with all our compatriots, that there is an individual, aged 57, who died from Covid-19,” the taskforce spokeswoman, professor Hanta Vololontiana said in a televised address.

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The Island nation which has been in the news in recent times over a home-grown herbal remedy that President Andry Rajoelina claims can cure people infected with Coronavirus has not recorded any COVID-19 related death until now.

Rajoelina had maintained that the lack of death from the 304 cases of COVID-19 in the country was proof that the Covid-Organics was effective. But the World Health Organization had warned against adopting the product until it has been taken through tests to confirm its efficacy.

Nonetheless, several African countries ordered or expressed interest in the remedy, citing the lack of COVID-19 death in Madagascar as an indication of its efficacy. But doubts are now bound to set in after the remedy’s claim to fame has been demystified with the death of the 57-year-old COVID-19 patient.

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With this new reality, Rajoelina will need another reason to convince “dissenting voices” why the herbal remedy he is promoting is the ultimate cure for the COVID-19.

Although Nigeria took delivery of the herbal remedy on Saturday from a batch Madagascar sent to West Africa, President Buhari had revealed that the country will not use the remedy without the endorsement of regulatory institutions.

“My position regarding all herbal or traditional medicines is that any such formulations should be sent to the statutory regulators for thorough scientific verification. We will not put anything to use in Nigeria without the endorsement of our regulatory institutions,” he said.

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Unless the tests from various countries and health organizations confirm the efficacy of the herbal remedy, it might end up being shelved just like all others before it or remain a controversial tonic that not many people really need.

The post How the first COVID-19 death in Madagascar has marred its herbal remedy’s claim to fame appeared first on Neusroom.

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