• Palace warns vs. stem cell treatments

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    Malacañang on Friday warned the public to stay away from illegal stem cell therapy treatments offered in the country by foreign doctors.

    Deputy Palace spokesman Abigail Valte made the appeal following numerous complaints from health experts and the public that unregistered stem cell preparations and therapies are being provided in hotels and other non-health facilities.

    Reports revealed that three politicians died one year after undergoing stem cell treatment. But it is not clear if they died because of the stem cell treatments, or because of old age.

    “Mula po sa DOH: Iyong stem cell treatment daw po is geared toward for a certain purpose. Iyong mga sinasabi pong mga ‘cure all’ ay peke po iyon [According to the DOH, stem cell treatment is geared toward a certain purpose. Any offer for cure-all treatment is fake],” Valte pointed out.

    “Wala pong ganoong treatment that will ‘cure all’ of your ills much less your love problems [There is no treatment that will cure all of your ills much less your love problems],” she added

    The Department of Health will issue an administrative order imposing tighter regulations on stem cell treatment offered by hospitals, Valte said.

    “By August 31, kailangan na pong mag-file ng mga ospital noong kanilang accreditation requirements for them to continue to offer this treatment [ By August 31, all hospitals must file their accreditation requirements so they can continue to offer stem cell treatment],” she said

    “Uulitin po natin, iyong ospital po iyong ina-accredit hindi po iyong doktor, hindi po individual. Iyong mga stand-alone clinic po, hindi po iyan puwedeng magpa-accredit sa DOH so iyon po iyong isang warning po natin doon sa ating mga kababayan [Let me repeat that the hospitals, not the doctors or the individuals, are the ones accredited. The stand-alone clinics also cannot register with the DOH. That’s our warning to the public],” Valte said.

    “So huwag po tayong magpapaloko. Ang ospital po ang puwedeng may accreditation para mag-facilitate po ng mga stem cell treatments [Let us not be fooled. Only hospitals are accredited to facilitate stem cell treatments].”

    The FDA earlier said that patients who use unregistered stem cell preparations and therapies are at risk of acquiring infectious disease resulting in deadly complications.

    Unregistered stem cell preparations can lead to permanent disability, physical deformities and death without the benefit of health insurance coverage.

    Stem cell preparations such as genetically altered human adult and umbilical cord stem cells, and adipose or fat cells-derived human stem cell require FDA approval.

    Use of human cells, tissues, and cellular and tissue-based products that are subjected to genetic manipulation, as well as live animal embryonic, fetal, or adult stem cells in parenteral form for human administration also need FDA approval.

    Catherine S. Valente

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