Good News! Approval for VCO clinical testing at PGH out within a week -DOST

Good News! Approval for VCO clinical testing at PGH out within a week -DOST

The Philippines might just beat the other countries in finding the cure for the novel coronavirus 2019 disease or COVID-19 as a home grown solution will be close to having an approval for its clinical trials.

The Department of Science and Technology (DOST) is just awaiting the final go signal from the ethics board within the week to conduct virgin coconut oil (VCO)’s clinical trials on COVID-19 patients at the Philippine General Hospital (PGH). 

"Sa PGH po, inaasahan namin na bago mag Lunes, magkakaroon na ng approval ng ethics board; pero ready na po sila du'n sa gagawing [clinical] trials," DOST Secretary Fortunato Dela Peña said in a public briefing.

(photo credit to owner)

[Translation: As for PGH, we are hoping to get the approval of the ethics committee before Monday of next week; but the health workers there are already equipped for the clinical trials.]

The DOST is also in preparation for its first set of trials at the Santa Rosa Community Hospital in Laguna. Medical staffs on the site has completed their training for the said trials.

"Aabot po ng 28 days [bago makapagsimula], kasi nung Martes lang po natapos 'yung training ng mga personnel sa hospital — kasama na po 'yung dietitians, medical technologists," Dela Peña said.
[Translation: It may take 28 days before we begin, as we have just finished the training of the hospital personnel last Tuesday, including dietitians, medical technologists.]

"Ngayon po, ongoing ang enrollment ng mga pasyente. Nais po naming makabuo ng 45 participating patients doon sa Santa Rosa, at 45 din naman po na hindi bibigyan ng VCO, para ma-compare," he added.
[Translation: Enrollment for patients is now ongoing there in Sta. Rosa. We are looking at testing 45 patients who will take the virgin coconut oil, and another 45 who will not, to compare the results.]
Dela Peña said the DOST said it is working hand in hand with the local government and some departments, which include its arm agency, the Food and Nutrition Research Institute (FNRI), and the Philippine Coconut Authority (PCA).
The FNRI takes charge of the menu and research work, while the PCA provides supplies of unbranded virgin coconut oil, it said.

The PCA also helps fund the program, according to the DOST.
"Nagpapasalamat [naman] kami sa local government ng Sta. Rosa, sa pamamahala ni Mayor [Arlene] Arcillas, dahil sila po ang nag-ooperate ng ospital," Dela Peña said.
[Translation: We thank the local government of Sta. Rosa, under the leadership of Mayor Arlene Arcillas, because they are the ones heading the operations in the hospital.]
The DOST also said that they have already sent some samples of the derivatives of VCO to a testing facility abroad – which has a collection of the SARS-COV-2, or the virus that causes COVID-19 — to further test its effectiveness.

"Kailangang makita natin kung sa clinical trials na 'yan ay malakas ang aksyon at mapapahina o mapapababa po ng ating mga materyales na pinadala doon 'yung infectivity po ng virus nila," he said.
[Translation: We need to see whether such materials have strong or weak effects on the infectivity of the virus.]

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Report from CNN Phils

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