TCM Herbal Formulas to Treat COVID-19

The Shanghai University of Traditional Chinese Medicine (SHUTCM) has published a Diagnosis and Treatment Protocol for COVID-19. The protocol includes recommended herbal formulas to treat COVID-19, based on established collections of signs and symptoms of coronavirus.

The protocol includes recommended herbal formulas for mild, moderate, severe and critical cases of coronavirus. The SHUTCM recommend that practitioners personalise the formulas according to the individual’s body constitution and specific signs or symptoms at the time.

Herbal Formulas to Treat COVID-19

For patients with mild symptoms of fatigue and gastrointestinal discomfort, practitioners are advised to prescribe Huoxiang ZhengQi Jiaonang/Wan. For those who are experiencing fatigue and fever, three possible granulated formulas can be used – JinHua QingGan KeLi, LianHua QingWen KeLi or ShuFeng JieDu KeLi. (KeLi(颗粒)is the pinyin for concentrated granules.)

Click here for a guide to different formula formats.

For confirmed cases of coronavirus, the National Ministry of Health Commission and the National Administration of Traditional Chinese Medicine (NATCM) recommend QingFei PaiDu Tang, Lung-Cleansing and Toxin-Removing Decoction. This formula can be used for mild, moderate or severe cases, however the dosage must be adjusted according to the individual patient. For instance, a smaller dose for mild symptoms without a fever and a larger dose for individuals suffering from a fever/high fever.

Herbal Formulas to Treat COVID-19The protocol goes on to list further formulas for individuals with more specific signs and symptoms. Mild cases may include damp-heat accumulating in the Lung. Moderate cases may include damp toxin stagnating in the Lung and cold-dampness obstructing the Lung. In severe cases, the patient may present with epidemic toxin blocking the Lung or flaring heat in both Qi and Yin phases.

For patients recovering from coronavirus, either presenting with Qi deficiency of the Lung and Spleen or deficiency of Qi and Yin, detailed formulas are also included. It is equally as important to support patients in their recovery as the COVID-19 disease may significantly deplete Qi in moderate and severe cases.

It is highly recommended that practitioners make adjustments to herbal formulas for COVID-19, based on the individual and their signs/symptoms presented at the time.

The COVID-19 TCM Diagnosis and Treatment Protocol was translated into English by teams from SHUTCM and also the World Federation of Chinese Medicine Societies (WFCMS).

Phoenix Medical Chinese Herbal Dispensary

At Phoenix, we operate an ATCM and RCHM approved Chinese herbal dispensary. Our dispensary is also the official supplier to clinical trials at the University of Southampton and we dispense both raw dried herbs and concentrated granules. A variety of prescription formats are also available. The dispensary remains open as a critical service providing herbal prescriptions to patients. Qualified herbalists may order customised herbal prescriptions by visiting our website or by emailing

Disclaimer: This information is for qualified herbalists only. Do not take herbal medicine without the guidance of a professional. Please note that various herbs described in some of the formulas are prohibited for use in the UK and European Union. For advice on substituting herbs, please contact us by emailing

To view the Diagnosis and Treatment Protocol, click here.

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