One of Ghana’s herbal medicines touted for its immune boosting properties have been found to be contaminated with escherichia coli (E.Coli), a bacterium that health experts say causes serious health implications in humans.
Executive President of COA Global Peace Mission, Professor Samuel Ato Duncan recently urged government and research institutions globally to subject COA FS to further research in order to ascertain its effectiveness against COVID-19.
It followed claims that some persons who contracted the deadly novel coronavirus in China recovered after using the COA FS Immune Booster.
Laboratory analysis of the FDA-approved COA FS Food Supplement however revealed that the product, which has become hotcake following the outbreak of coronavirus, also has excessive microbial content.
“…laboratory analysis on samples picked from the market and the manufacturing facility of COA Herbal Centre in Wusorkrom near Cape Coast…showed excessive microbial, mould and yeast contamination,” the FDA said in a statement dated April 17.
According to the FDA, E. Coli “must be absent in all medicinal products”, noting that for COA FS to have such bacteria “makes the product substandard and therefore not recommended”.
It said the contamination poses serious health risks to consumers, indicating ingestion of the product could cause diarrhoea, gastroenterities, abdominal pain, nausea and vomiting.
Also, exposure of children and older adults to E.Coli contamination can results in serious health implications like hemolytic uremic syndrome leading to kidney failures, the FDA said in the statement.
Although the manufacturer said it is recommended for HIV patients, the FDA indicated “Individuals with weakened immune systems, eg HIV patients, can become seriously ill due to the ingestion of products contaminated with E.Coli”.
The FDA has accordingly ordered a total recall of all COA FS Food Supplement on the market and in homes.
It has asked all persons who have bought some of the products to return them to where they were purchased or to the manufacturer.
“The FDA offices in the regions are working to ensure that this contaminated product (COA FS) is removed from the market” the statement assured.