The World Health Organization (WHO) on Thursday said that it is in touch with Madagascar over its herbal drink Covid Organics (CVO) — believed to cure coronavirus or COVID-19 patients.

”We are in touch with the government of Madagascar,” Matshidiso Moeti, regional director of WHO office in Africa, told a media briefing.

The WHO response came after Madagascar President Andry Rajoelina had slammed the global health body for not endorsing the CVO.

Last month, Rajoelina officially launched the CVO — an organic herbal concoction — claiming that it can prevent and cure patients suffering from the novel coronavirus.

Moeti said WHO’s representative has spoken with Madagascar’s Health Ministry and has held a meeting with the president.

”We have offered to support the design of a study to look into this product [Covid Organics]. We are in discussion to sort out the way forward,” she added.

She said so far the WHO does not have any data related to the efficiency of the CVO. She said the WHO director-general will also speak with Madagascar president.

“WHO has been working in the traditional medicine sector. We work very hard to facilitate collaboration and to incorporate traditional medicine into national health systems,” Moeti said.

The CVO has been developed by the Malagasy Institute of Applied Research. Madagascar has shipped the drug to several African countries.

On Monday, the Indian Ocean countries also criticized the WHO for not endorsing its COVID-19 herbal cure.

Moeti further said that because of undernourishment, people in Africa have a weaker immune system, thus making them vulnerable to infectious diseases.

“This is an urgent issue, as more than 200 million people in Africa are undernourished. The COVID-19 pandemic is making the situation worse, “she said.

So far 72,336 cases of COVID-19 have been reported in Africa with 2,475 deaths.

The tiny enclave state of Lesotho in Southern Africa has reported its first infection, the Africa Centers for Disease Control and Prevention on Thursday.

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