DOST recruiting volunteers for VCO study in Valenzuela City

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Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, February 17) — The Department of Science and Technology has begun recruiting volunteers for a study that aims to confirm the findings of a clinical trial, which suggested that virgin coconut oil helps speed up the recovery of patients with suspected coronavirus disease.

“We are expanding our research in Valenzuela with the cooperation of Mayor Rex Gatchalian. We have started recruiting patients already in the emergency hospital as well as the LGU facility,” DOST-Food and Nutrition Research Institute Director Imelda Angeles-Agdeppa told CNN Philippines’ New Day on Wednesday. But she did not elaborate on where exactly the study sites are.

“We hope to gather more patients and confirm our findings in Sta. Rosa [in Laguna] to build more science-based evidence that VCO is really a good supplement for moderate or mild cases of COVID-19,” Angeles-Agdeppa added.

Last year, researchers from the DOST-FNRI tested the effectiveness of VCO as a supplement for the treatment of 57 patients with coronavirus-like symptoms at the Santa Rosa Community Quarantine Facility and Santa Rosa Community Hospital for 28 days.

The VCO group or 29 participants received standard meals containing VCO, while the control group consisting of 28 cases got the same meals without VCO.

The VCO group was free of symptoms on the 18th day, while the control group only stopped exhibiting symptoms on the 23rd day, leading experts to say coconut oil could be used as a supplement for COVID-19 treatment.

The efficacy of coconut oil will also be tested on patients with moderate and severe COVID-19 symptoms as well as those with comorbidities at the Philippine General Hospital in Manila.