KARACHI — Pakistani health authorities say they have successfully completed a clinical trial of traditional Chinese herbal medicine for the treatment of Covid-19.
The announcement came on Monday as Pakistan enters the fifth wave of the pandemic caused by the Omicron variant of the coronavirus.
The Chinese drug, Jinhua Qinggan Granules (JHQG) manufactured by Juxiechang (Beijing) Pharmaceutical Co Ltd, is already being used in the treatment of Covid-19 patients in China.
“Since it has been tried on patients with different variants of COVID-19, we expect it to be effective on Omicron as on other variants,” said Professor Iqbal Chaudhry, director of the International Center for Chemical and Biological Sciences (ICCBS) where trials were conducted. , told reporters.
The trials were conducted on 300 patients treated at home and would work on mild to moderate cases of COVID-19, Dr Raza Shah, the trials’ principal investigator, told reporters, adding that the effectiveness rate was around 82.67%.
The trials have been approved by the Pakistan Drug Regulatory Authority.
On Monday, Pakistan reported 4,340 cases of COVID-19, the highest recorded over a 24-hour period in three months. Karachi, the country’s largest city, recorded a positivity rate – the percentage of tests coming back positive – of 39.39% over the weekend, the highest yet.
“Over the past seven days, Covid cases in Pakistan have increased by 170% while deaths have also increased by 62%,” the National Command Operation Center (NCOC), which oversees the pandemic response, said on Monday. , in a tweet.