COVID-19 infected inmates with minor symptoms have responded well to traditional Thai herbal medicines, says the Corrections Department.
Chief Ayut Sinthoppan said inmates with non-severe symptoms had improved after they were given kariyat (Andrographis paniculata), fingerroot (Boesenbergia rotunda) and ginger as herbal medicines.
A study on the use of kariyat to treat COVID-19 patients with mild symptoms by the Institute for Urban Disease Control and Prevention had shown the herbal medication is effective in COVID-19 treatment.
“The use of herbal medicines among infected inmates is effective. The recovery rate has increased,” he said.
He has asked correctional facilities with farming plots to cultivate kariyat for future medicinal use after Justice Minister Somsak Thepsutin asked the department to allocate a 1,000-rai plot for a kariyat demonstration farm.
Mr Sinthoppan said the number of inmates infected with COVID-19 is also on the decline after the department required all new inmates to be quarantined for 14 days at isolated venues before entering prison if they test negative.
The medicinal properties of kariyat and fingerroot are being studied by the Public Health Ministry and its research partners after early studies found them to be effective against coronavirus in patients with mild symptoms.
According to the Department of Thai Traditional and Alternative Medicine, a recent study showed kariyat is effective in suppressing the virus from replicating.