The AYUSH Ministry on Thursday denied giving any approval to a COVID-19 treatment protocol developed by NICE and said the network's claim was "baseless and misleading".
The ministry issued a statement, saying some misleading claims have been made by a naturopathy-related network NICE (Network of Influenza Care Experts)and have been published by some media platforms.
"The main claim is regarding developing a protocol of treatment of COVID-19 that has been approved by the Ministry of AYUSH. The claimant has unethically and misleadingly attributed Ministry of AYUSH's approval to it," it stated.
"The Ministry of AYUSH strongly denies all such claims of NICE and considers the publication of related news as completely misleading and baseless," the statement read.
The AYUSH Ministry clarified that the agency, NICE, "has not submitted any application for the so-called protocol to it."
"If any proposal related with COVID-19 treatment/management is submitted to the ministry by NICE, it will get thoroughly examined by the Interdisciplinary Technical Review Committee (ITRC)."
"The committee has a well-established and rigorous scientific screening process for such validation. Without the approval of this committee, no AYUSH streams-related agency can claim to have developed a protocol," the ministry said.
"NICE has done a very unethical, illegal, and baseless act in claiming to have developed an AYUSH Ministry-approved naturopathy-based protocol for COVID-19 treatment. Equally serious is its act of using the name of the ministry without the Ministry's explicit permission," the statement added.