The current global tally of coronavirus is 63,072,905 with 1,465,186 deaths reported so far. Despite an effort to thwart misinformation and disinformation regarding coronavirus cure, social media has continued to be a major tool being used to fool people with unproven claims. The latest in the list is a cure that claims to kill coronavirus within one hour.
The message was seen floating on social media, especially on WhatsApp, in Malaysia. Malaysia currently has 64,485 cases of coronavirus and the country has reported 357 deaths so far. According to the message, drinking the concoction of tender coconut water mixed with lime and a spoon of salt can kill coronavirus within an hour of consuming it. This message is being shared widely, without any proof or scientific explanation.
The Malaysian authorities have clearly stated that there is no cure for coronavirus yet. Speaking to Strait Times, Teluk Intan Hospital Emergency and Trauma Department head Dr Samsu Ambia Ismail said that people can opt for alternative medicine including Ayurvedic or Chinese traditional medicine for health purposes but warned that people should not neglect proper medical treatment if they are infected with COVID-19.
In fact, Dr Samsu had contracted COVID-19 and he too had received advice to try ketum juice as a treatment. The health experts have asked people to be cautious and not believe the messages being circulated on social media regarding COVID-19.
Telemedicine for COVID-19
Social media is not the only way people are trying to spread fake news. In Kuala Lumpur, a banner was put up, which claimed that telemedicine and free services related to Covid-19 vaccine were being offered. The picture of this banner was shared by a netizen, resulting in a backlash. Soon, the banner was removed stated an update on the internet.
Among messages making rounds on social media in Malaysia, montoku draws attention. Montoku is a local distilled rice wine. There are plenty of messages advising people who have tested positive for COVID-19 to drink montoku while claiming that this drink can kill coronavirus.
Another WahtsApp remedy for COVID-19 is mixing a raw egg with orange juice and drinking it once before bedtime and again at dawn before taking a bath. Despite warnings, people have not stopped promoting snake-oil as a treatment to COVID-19. In July, a woman was taken to task for selling an 'anti-Covid-19 bracelet' for $197. She was slapped with a $12,000 fine for misleading people.
According to the World Health Organization, there is no vaccine for COVID-19 yet. "Many potential vaccines for COVID-19 are being studied, and several large clinical trials may report results later this year," WHO stated. It also said that if a vaccine is proven safe and effective, it must be approved by national regulators, manufactured to exacting standards, and distributed.
Thus, the above claimed cures on social media are baseless. If tested positive for COVID-19, get proper medical treatment available as of now. Practice social distancing, continue to wear mask and keep sanitzers handy, say health experts.