IPOH: Traditional medicine practitioners and patients are hoping that the services will be allowed to operate under the enhanced movement control order.
Perak Chinese Physicians’ Association representative Leong Tuck Seng said the association hopes that the National Security Council (NSC) and Health Ministry would reconsider the current Covid-19 standard operating procedures (SOP) and allow practitioners to treat their patients.
“We have followed the SOP in our clinics, allowing only one or two patients at a time.
“Most of our members have completed our vaccinations, therefore we wonder why acupuncture centres are not allowed to open during the enhanced MCO, ” he told reporters during a live-stream press conference held by Pasir Pinji assemblyman Howard Lee Chuan How on Wednesday (May 26).
“Most of our patients have critical conditions and require two to three sessions of treatment a week.
“Some of them are staying far from the centres. Imagine their disappointment when they learn that our centres are closed, ” he added.
About 100 acupuncture centres are affected by the ongoing enhanced MCO implemented at four sub-districts in Perak.
A 37-year-old acupuncture patient, Dr Nursalwa Baharuddin, said she has been relying on the treatment since last year.
“I was diagnosed with dengue and complications resulted in some of my organs not functioning properly.
“Having sought treatment and been warded for 10 days in hospitals in Singapore and Kuala Lumpur, I gave acupuncture a try, ” she said.
“It took only two months of daily acupuncture to help me feel better. I really hope the NSC would consider placing acupuncture as an essential service, ” she added.
Lee said the government should support any methods and practices that could lift the burden on the Health Ministry that is currently battling against Covid-19.
“I have been contacted by numerous acupuncture patients with diseases like cancer and kidney issues, telling me that they have been in pain since acupuncture clinics were told to close.
“Together with reflexology, acupuncture practitioners have completed their vaccinations.
"This means they are recognised as medical practitioners. Therefore their clinics should be allowed to operate as usual, ” he said.