Recently, a friend asked me – what is your take as a homeopath on the coronavirus situation? I have written these thoughts in the form of three short essays. The first one explains my perspective on the situation and the measures currently being taken. The second essay studies the presenting symptoms of COVID-19, and the remedies indicated. The third essay considers causation, susceptibility and pre-dispositions, and what can be done to improve the health of the population.
The widescale curtailment of liberty, halting economic activity, banning physical contact, closing schools and colleges, and severe restrictions on journeys – these measures will have serious consequences to health, especially for young people.
The justification for these measures is to protect elderly and vulnerable people, and to prevent an overtaxing of the health service.
The vulnerable group, based on reports from ICUs, are patients who are susceptible to Acute Respiratory Distress, and they are comprised of people with pre-existing conditions, including heart disease, cancer, COPD, diabetes, asthma, allergies, auto-immune diseases and obesity. In these cases, an infection with Covid-19 can trigger an over-reaction of the immune response, leading to pulmonary odema and rapid-onset pneumonia. In the most vulnerable group, the illness can progress to asphyxiation, cyanosis, and respiritory failure. Elderly people are more vulnerable, as, even if they are not suffering with one of the above conditions, immune efficiency is reduced with age.
In a group of 70.000 infected patients in China, 83% suffered only mild cold-like symptoms, and fully recovered within 7 – 14 days (Group A). A further 14% went on to suffer severe symptoms, which lasted on average 4 weeks, but with some lasting symptoms (Group B), and 3% required critical care (Group C).
Are the measures in place correct to protect this vulnerable group? Or is there a better way to achieve this goal?
To minimise the risk for vulnerable patients, we should ensure that the people they come into contact with are not in the contagious stage of the virus. This implies that we should be developing a secure and reliable antibody test for immunity, and cultivating “natural immunity” within Group A.
For most people in Group A, the COVID-19 illness is no different from having a cold (which is also a corona virus). Therefore Health Centres and GP surgeries should be hubs for infection management, with a turnstile system in place, to allow people to resume normal activity, once they have developed natural immunity.
People in the vulnerable group must be assessed individually. A child with mild asthma is not in the same risk category as an elderly person with heart disease. These risks can be measured on a case by case basis.
Besides managing the efficient transmission of the infection, support for improving and mainting health is also important. to help borderline patients from falling into Group B.
Functional medicine Practitioner, Dr Rangan Chaterjee, points to the need for a preventative approach, when he says:
“I don’t treat the disease, I treat the person. The majority of my patients don’t need a pill, they need a lifestyle prescription.”
With a regime of transmission management and preventative therapies, isolation would only be necessary in the case of the higher risk groups, and care providers who have confirmed natural immunity would provide the support needed by this group.
Elderly people are more vulnerable, as the immune function is reduced with aging, but the turnstile approach would permit families to be reunited as immunity progresses. For those who have no family, they would be cared for by professionals who have developed natural immunity. No need for PPE, no risk, no stress.
To provide the isolation care for vulnerable patients, hotels should be utilised to provide comfortable accommodation, thus leaving hospitals free to continue with everyday health care. Once their family have developed natural immunity, they could safely return home.
This crisis has brought to light a deep flaw in our understanding about immunity. Because we have a system of medicine that does not individualise the patiuent, but works only in generalities, we have seen fit to isolate the whole population. But this has come at a great cost to public health and freedom.
In the past, doctors recognized that immunity follows infection like a cart follows a horse. But in this era, our certainty of this has become confused. It was once the task of physicians to study nature and learn her secrets, following the idea that healthy communities are established and maintained by living in balance with our environment. However, the current medical model no longer trusts nature’s capacity to keep us healthy.
Yet if not nature, what else could be the true source for health? A system of medicine that sees enemies within nature is making wrong assumptions, and now that we are experiencing the result of our wrong-headedness, we should recognise the error, and rein in medicine to work in harmony with the natural world, just as we must do qwith agriculture and with industry. Massive river dams, nuclear power plants, deforestation, and pharmaceutical drugs – they may provide short term gains, but they disrupt the natural balance, and they have no place in a sustainable, peaceful and healthy world.
Bill Gates recently declared that “The world can only return to normalcy when a vaccine has been developed and delivered to every member of the world population.” This is not a medical fact, but more a declaration of intent. When finally a vaccine is developed, and is properly tested, it may be needed for patients who are unable to develop natural immunity without severe risk. But vaccines also carry risks. There should now be an open debate within society, with the research data laid out for all to see.
The reliance on pharmaceutical medicine to “protect” us from nature is counter-productive. It makes us weak, disconnected from the true source of health, and serves mainly to engender fear in the population, and profits for the drug companies.
This situation may yet inspire us to make some key realisations, and begin to strive towards a holistic model for health care, education and food production; that is aligned with nature, and not at odds with it; that supports biodiversity, and not monocultures; so that we can create a sustainable, peaceful and healthy world.
This essay is part of a trilogy. In the second part, I will discuss the treatment of Covid-19 symptoms with homeopathic therapeutics.