SCIO briefing on efforts of the Central Guidance Team in Hubei to organize and guide epidemic control

The State Council Information Office held a press conference on Thursday afternoon in Wuhan, the epicenter of the COVID-19 outbreak, to introduce the efforts being undertaken by the Central Guidance Team in Hubei to organize and guide the work related to epidemic prevention and control. February 21, 2020

Macao Daily News:

A lot of online articles refer to the effect of traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) on COVID-19. Could you please introduce the current treatment effect of combined traditional Chinese and Western medicine? Thank you.

Yu Yanhong:

We are paying equal attention to TCM and Western medicine, and promoting mutual complementation and coordinated development of TCM and Western medicine, highlighting the advantages of China's medical and healthcare system. During the period treating patients with COVID-19, we allowed Chinese medicine to join during the early stage and insisted on combining TCM and Western medicine, which has achieved remarkable effects. Many clinical practices have confirmed that the effect of combining traditional Chinese and Western medicine in the treatment of COVID-19 has been positive and effective.

For mild cases, TCM can quickly improve symptoms such as fever, dry cough, sore throat, poor appetite and fatigue. It can shorten inpatient time and reduce the possibility of mild infections becoming more severe. For severe cases, in addition to improving the major symptoms and related indicators, it can also reduce the possibility of severe infections becoming critical, promote the transition from severe infections to mild, reduce the mortality rate, and increase the number of lymphocytes, which is a key index for prognosis of severe symptoms.

The National Administration of Traditional Chinese Medicine (NATCM), guided by clinical "emergency, practicality and effectiveness," launched an emergency program to speed up the clinical screening of effective prescriptions. According to the results of clinical observations, the NATCM and the National Health Commission jointly promoted the herbal concoction Qingfei Paidu Soup to the whole country. Clinical observations in 10 provinces have further proved that Qingfei Paidu Soup has a good effect in treatment, and it has been promoted as a general prescription in the sixth edition of the treatment and diagnosis plan" published by the National Health Commission.

The Ministry of Science and Technology has launched two major TCM programs. The team led by Academician Zhang Boli and Professor Liu Qingquan carried out a case-controlled study on 102 clinical cases in Wuhan. The study showed that the treatment of patients with mild symptoms using a combination of TCM and Western medicine can shorten the time with clinical symptoms by two days, the time of returning to normal body temperature by 1.7 days, and the average length of patients' hospital stay by 2.2 days. It can also enhance the recovery rate of CT images by 22 percent and clinical curing rate by 33 percent, decrease the general rate of transiting from normal symptoms to severe by 27.4 percent, and increase lymphocytes by 70 percent.

The clinical study by Academician Huang Luqi's team in Wuhan showed that the treatment of patients with severe symptoms using a combination of TCM and Western medicine can reduce the average hospitalization and length of negative nucleic acid by more than two days, significantly increase oxyhemoglobin saturation, shorten the time on relief from oxygen inhalation, and significantly improve such physicochemical indexes as the percentage of lymphocytes and lactic dehydrogenase.

Some cities and provinces have also insisted on using a combination of TCM and Western medicine such as Shanghai, Guangdong province and Zhejiang province, and achieved great effects. The results are inspiring.

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