DAR ES SALAAM - Ever since Tanzania’s president endorsed inhaling steam to prevent coronavirus, some have flocked to shops selling steam machines – even though health experts say there is no evidence the method has any impact on COVID-19, the disease caused by the coronavirus.
Msafiri is making good money with a steam machine that he invented.
Mjema says people are coming to buy his product ever since President John Magufuli declared that steam works against the coronavirus.
Mjema says he now makes up to $200 dollars a day.
Mjema says before in his clinic he was earning 70,000 to 100,000 shillings but now he earns 500,000 and there is one day that he earned up to one million. He adds that is just the beginning.
Two months ago, the Tanzanian leader suggested inhaling steam could be a coronavirus treatment.
Magufuli said, "The Ministry of Health should continue to clarify how inhaling steam helps to contain the coronavirus," he says, adding that If those viruses are in the nose or mouth, they will melt when the temperature reaches above 100 degrees centigrade. He says that is also an important thing.
Jane Makyao has put her faith in steam and comes for the treatment.
Makyao says she steams because she knows there is the coronavirus, adding that when you get out from the steaming booth your body becomes more comfortable. Even President Magufuli and their ministers recommend steaming because they know its importance, she says.
But health experts warn there is no evidence steam protects anyone from the coronavirus, adding that inhaling steam could even cause health problems.
Fazel says it is better to understand that there is no scientific proof of this, adding that one can't rely on steaming as the cure for the coronavirus. He also says it is better that people understand that there are effects of inhaling steam. He also says some people may get a certain type of pneumonia that causes lungs problems, and this may increase their chance to contract the coronavirus.
In the meantime, Mjema continues to make money with his service from people who believe that steam, somehow, will protect them from the infection.