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Temple trots



Temple trots | Thaiger

NAKHON RATCHASIMA: A man known locally to villagers in Kham Thalay So District as Mor Thewada, (which, roughly translated, means ‘Angel of Mercy’ doctor) is under investigation after a patient claimed that his medicine gave him a nasty case of diarrhea.

The story surfaced after a patient checked into Kham Thalay So Hospital suffering from a bad case of the runs.

After discussing it with the doctor, the most likely source of infection was traced back to a herbal treatment prescribed by one Budtha Namwongsa, 38, who was treating patients for various ailments at Nohn Tan Yai temple.

Budtha had been claiming his herbal potion could cure all diseases, the unnamed patient told doctors. Budtha did not charge for his services, but graciously accepted donations if offered, the patient added.

On hearing of the story, Kham Thalay So Hospital Director Dr Suphakij Iatragulphaibun, working with the District Public Health Office, ordered an investigation into Budtha’s activities.

When Public Health officers paid a call on Budtha on June 22, they found him busy with no fewer than 10 patients in the temple’s sala.

Most of the patients were suffering from cancer.

Budtha was ordered to put an immediate stop to his practice, Dr Suphakij said.

Samples of his “miracle” herb were taken for analysis to see if they were potentially harmful. If they were determined to be the source of the patient’s bowel problems, Budtha would face charges, he said.

Budtha claimed that he had never claimed any special powers for his herbal medicine.

Its reputation as a cure-all followed its use in treating the temple abbot, who was treated for injures suffered in a road accident about three months previous, he said.

He did not have a set fee for the treatment.

“I got the herb mixture from my mum, I don’t know exactly what herbs are in it,” Budtha admitted.

“Patients take one teaspoon of it a day and say that it makes them feel better – or completely cures them. That’s why it has become so well known,” he added.  


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