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European Coalition on Homeopathic & Anthroposophic Medicinal Products


MEP Interest Group on Integrative Medicine and Health: The prevention and management of COVID-19 and Long COVID

May 24, 2022

On 14 June, the MEP Interest Group on Integrative Medicine and Health will host a hybrid event at the European Parliament in Brussels and online from 15:00-17:00 CEST  on the role of Integrative Medicine and Health in the prevention and management of COVID-19 and long COVID. Leading experts will share their knowledge and insights on enhancing resilience as a solution for COVID-19 and other infectious illnesses.

Nearly two-thirds of COVID-19 hospitalisations can be attributed to obesity, diabetes, hypertension, and heart failure. There is increasing awareness that a health system that focuses on improving health could prevent all these conditions to a large extent. Many people remain unaffected by COVID or develop only a mild illness because infectious disease comprises two factors: on the one hand the microbe and on the other, population health and resilience. One strategy that merits further attention is to reduce susceptibility by building an effective immune system.

More than 40% of people who have or have had COVID-19 get Long COVID, and among people who needed hospitalisation, the statistics go up to 57%. The recovery from such post-viral syndromes will be greatly helped by offering patients access to complementary and integrative medicine interventions that aim at restoring their health. The scientific literature provides substantial evidence that lifestyle interventions can improve resistance to viral infections and reduce the risk of a severe disease course. In addition, complementary and integrative medicine interventions can play a role because they aim to increase health and resilience, reduce susceptibility, and mitigate responses to infections. More research is needed to assess the added value of these interventions to improve resilience to COVID-19 infection and reduce the risk of severe COVID-19 or the development of Long COVID.

At the event, expert speakers from Germany, Spain and the US will report on how Integrative Medicine and Health can:

  • Improve resilience to COVID-19 and similar infections,
  • Reduce the risk of severe COVID-19 or development of Long COVID by promoting resilience and health restoration, and
  • Improve the recovery from Long COVID.

The World Health Organisation will be represented at the event by Dr Geetha Kopalakrishna, MD, Bachelor of Ayurvedic Medicine & Surgery and technical officer at the Traditional, Complementary & Integrative Medicine unit, Department of Service Delivery and Safety, World Health Organization, Geneva. Dr Kopalakrishna is also a key member of the AYUSH-based COVID-19 response Task Force for the Government of India.

The event is organised by EUROCAM, the European platform for Integrative Medicine and Health and hosted by the members of the MEP Interest Group on Integrative Medicine & Health: Michèle Rivasi (Greens/EFA–F), Sirpa Pietikäinen (EPP–SF), Tilly Metz (Greens/EFA–L), Margrete Auken (Greens/EFA–DK), Romana Jerković (S&D–HR) and Manuela Ripa (Greens/EFA–D). Registration is now open and admission is free.