Current Study

North American COVID-19 Tibetan Medicine Observational Study 




Funders and Supporters:



Project Description:

This project aims to study COVID-19 cases treated exclusively by Tibetan medicine in North America. Our goal is to demonstrate how Tibetan medical physicians provide care for mild and medium-severity COVID-19 cases in North America, and if such treatment approaches are shortening the course of disease, ameliorating symptoms differentially and/or preventing long-term effects of COVID-19. This project is a collaboration between Tibetan physicians in major city centers where Tibetan medicine serves large Tibetan immigrant populations. We review de-identified patient data on traditional and biomedical diagnostics, complex Tibetan geomedicinals and herbal formulas used during the course of treatment, clinical outcomes, patient experiences, and characterizations of how the physician-patient relationship was forged under pandemic conditions. We seek to integrate research mentorship of participating physicians and Tibetan college-age research assistants, as well as non-Tibetan undergraduate and graduate students interested in Tibetan medical research, to innovate distributed research methods amidst the New Normal.


Project Team:

Principle Investigators:

        • Tawni Tidwell, TMD, PhD, University of Wisconsin-Madison
        • Tenzin Namdul, TMD, PhD, Epidemiology & Community Health, School of Public Health, University of Minnesota

Participating Tibetan Physicians:

        • Tawni Tidwell
        • Tenzin Namdul
        • Jetsun Cheme
        • Tsering Tsomo
        • Phuntsog Wangmo
        • Dickyi Yangzom
        • Yangbum Gyal
        • Tenzin Namdul
        •  Dawa Ridak
        •  Tsundu Sengye
        •  Anasuya Weil
        •  Tsering Youdon
        •  Nashalla Gwyn Nyinda
        •  Tawni Tidwell
        •  Nyima Youdon
        • Yangdron Kalzang

Research Assistants:

        • Jetsun Jungney— sophomore, neurobiology, University of California, Davis
        • Tenzin Palkyi —  UT Southwestern Medical School (1st year)
        • Natalie Skopicki — pre-med, Emory University
        • Kristin Blake — second year psychiatry resident, University of Wisconsin School of Medicine and Public Health


        • Richard Davidson, neuroscientist, Center for Healthy Minds — University of Wisconsin-Madison
        • Melissa Rosenkranz, psychoneuroimmunologist, Center for Healthy Minds — University of Wisconsin-Madison
        • Richard MacLehose, epidemiologist, University of Minnesota
        • Sienna Craig, anthropologist, Dartmouth College
        • Erica Weirich, Director, Global Health Research Foundation; primary care physician, Stanford University
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