Amity co-hosts webinar on 'The Role of Traditional Medicine and Acupuncture in Prevention and Control of COVID-19'

On May 29, 2020, in cooperation with China NGO Network for International Exchanges, Amity Foundation, jointly organized with the Philippine Acupuncture Academy (PAAI), the Philippine Chinese Youth Federation (KAISA), the Philippine Association for Chinese Studies (PACS) and the Philippine-Chinese Friendship Association, a webinar on the theme “The Role of Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) and Acupuncture in the Prevention and Control of COVID-19”.

The conference, part of a series of activities of the extensive Silk Road NGO Cooperation Network, attracted nearly 200 participants from 121 organizations in 15 countries/regions that included Japan, Australia, Thailand, Myanmar, Nepal and the USA. Most participants were professionals in health care, research, and social development work.

Ms. She Hongyu, an Associate General Secretary of Amity, moderated the conference. Lectures were given by Dr. Shen Jia, Deputy Director of the Health Management Center of the Second Affiliated Hospital of Nanjing University of Chinese Medicine, and Dr. Liu Lanying, Director of Acupuncture and Rehabilitation Department of Jiangsu Provincial Hospital of Chinese Medicine.

In his opening remarks, PACS president Dr. Rommel Banlaoi said the conference was timely and relevant, not only in raising awareness and enriching our knowledge on acupuncture and traditional Chinese medicine but also in sustaining personal and professional connections amidst lockdowns and quarantines. In these trying times, we need to be much closer professionally in order to overcome all challenges of the pandemic together. This event is essential to strengthen people-to-people contacts not only between China and the Philippines but also with our neighbors in the Silk Road region both in the land and maritime domain.

In his well-illustrated lecture, Dr. Shen Jia, author of several TCM books, combined TCM theory, and case studies to explain the practical role of Chinese medicine and herbs during the COVID-19 outbreak in China as well as the efforts carried out in the post-lockdown period related to the resumption of work.

Focusing on acupuncture, Dr. Liu Lanying, explained the different stages undergone by COVID-19 patients including the period of medical observation, clinical treatment, recovery and home isolation. Sharing the research and case studies of the medical team sent to Hubei by the Jiangsu Provincial Hospital of Chinese Medicine, she introduced in detail the corresponding acupuncture points, techniques and alternative therapies in responding to the various symptoms of pneumonia caused by COVID-19.

The lectures were enthusiastically received by practitioners and helped raise the knowledge and interest of non-practitioners. Under the warm and convivial atmosphere, the two experts answered questions and offered advice on how to adapt TCM and acupuncture practice to the local climate and environment.

In her concluding remarks, Amity’s General Secretary, Ms. Ling Chunxiang recalled the long-standing cooperation between Amity and a number of non-profit organizations in the Philippines over the past 30 years. More recently, there has been solidarity and mutual donations of PPEs in the time of need from both sides. Amity received donations for masks from KAISA and the Philippine Liok Kui Fraternity in March and in May, donated protective gowns and masks to the Philippines through KAISA. Ms. Ling stressed that given the need to confront and overcome the pandemic, national and ethnic barriers should not be erected. Amity will continue to work with people around the world to overcome global challenges in the spirit of agape and the understanding that we all constitute a community of shared future.

In working with the WHO and the World Federation of Acupuncture Societies, the Philippine Academy of Acupuncturists is helping raise standards and professionalism in the Philippines. Its President, Dr. Tan Cho Chiong was one of the organizers for this webinar. After the meeting, there was much positive feedback from participants.

Alberto from the Pastoral Bible Society, excitedly described how Chinese medicine and acupuncture had greatly alleviated his own pains and aches. He was impressed by the breadth of information provided and the extensive network that was represented in this meeting. He was eager to share the lecture contents with his Chinese doctor.

From the Philippines Claretian Communication Foundation, Lhai said that he had many friends who had gone through the effectiveness and helpfulness of acupuncture in curing their health problems. He learned from this meeting that TCM and acupuncture can provide preventive and rehabilitation treatment for those infected by COVID19, particularly the ways and means of treatments, and feels this is very beneficial.

The road is not distant and the virus is not isolated. This online exchange was the third time that the Amity Foundation had participated in a series of exchanges among those which are part of the Silk Road NGO Cooperation Network. It was also the webinar with the largest number of participants, involving the largest number of countries and the largest number of organizations. In the future, Amity plans to respond more to overseas needs and to promote more cooperation between Chinese and overseas NGOs in overcoming the COVID pandemic, helping to build a community of common health.

You can watch the recorded webinar on our Youtube channel: https://youtu.be/TxewyvUfaCk