As Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) shows its potential in the fight against COVID-19, events featuring TCM have become highlights of the ongoing 2020 China International Fair for Trade in Services.
The fair, which kicked off on Friday, is one of the world's largest and most comprehensive fairs for trade in services and has attracted 18,000 enterprises and institutions from 148 countries and regions.
In an exhibition zone of the fair held in Beijing, TCM-related enterprises and organizations including Shijiazhuang Yiling Pharmaceutical Co., Ltd. in Hebei Province, the producer of Lianhua Qingwen capsules, drew a lot of visitors to their booths.
Lianhua Qingwen is a recommended patent TCM for the treatment of COVID-19. According to Zhang Yunling, the company's executive deputy general manager, the capsules have recently received a drug registration certificate granted by Kuwait authorities to treat mild and moderate cases of COVID-19.
The greenlight has given the drug a market entry into Kuwait, gaining a foothold for the company to further explore the Middle East market, she said.
Since the COVID-19 outbreak, Lianhua Qingwen capsules have been recommended in the diagnosis and treatment protocols of many Chinese provinces and cities. The medicine has obtained marketing approval in several countries.
Thanks to a raft of plans and regulations, the development of TCM has been raised to unprecedented levels, said Zhu Haidong, an official with the National Administration of Traditional Chinese Medicine.
Zhu added that TCM has so far gained a presence in 183 countries and regions, and the administration will continue to promote projects involving remote medical education and create a sound environment for the development of TCM.
The combined use of TCM and Western medicine is one of the reasons China has successfully controlled the COVID-19 epidemic.
TCM has demonstrated its unique advantage in reducing the fatality rate and improving the recovery rate, said Wang Qi, an academician with the Chinese Academy of Engineering.
TCM has been used in treating 92 percent of all confirmed COVID-19 cases across China, said a white paper released by the State Council Information Office in June.
The white paper noted that in Hubei, a province once hardest hit by COVID-19, more than 90 percent of confirmed cases received TCM treatment that proved effective.
Tong Xiaolin, an academician with the Chinese Academy of Sciences, said he believes now is the right time to let the world know about, and benefit from, TCM. He hopes that TCM and Western medicine can deepen integration through the COVID-19 fight.
Since many people are skeptical about TCM, Tong noted that it needs more scientific evidence and efficacy proof to allow the international society to accept the positive role of TCM in epidemic control.
"The novel coronavirus knows no countries, borders, or race. No country can stay out of the epidemic. What we need to do is cooperate, not compete," Tong said.