DANGER AHEAD A sign warns travelers in the Congo of the Ebola threat.
What is ozone therapy, what does it have to do with the Ebola virus—and what's the connection between Sierra Leone and Santa Rosa?
Answer: Dr. Robert Jay Rowen.
The Santa Rosa–based Rowen recently traveled to Sierra Leone to fight the Ebola virus and, he says in an interview with the Bohemian, to "salvage and save the front-line workers, protect the doctors and nurses in that country who are fighting this."
At the invitation of the Sierra Leone president, Rowen went to West Africa with New York doctor Howard Robins, and soon thereafter announced "the first cure of the Ebola infection in the world with a safe treatment" that costs less than $40.
In doing so, Rowen put his own life on the line, but says that he did so because of his absolute faith in the Ebola-fighting method he devised.
The doctors created the Rowen-Robins Ebola Treatment Protocol, which involves the direct intravenous infusion (DIV) of ozone gas into the anus. The super-oxygenation regime kills Ebola dead, he says. He says it both protects one against contracting Ebola in the first place and treats it effectively if you've got the virus.
The treatment has longtime proponents and detractors, but Rowen is adamant about its efficacy.
The Sierra Leone trip was quite an adventure, by his account—and left some of DIV-trained doctors who could offer the treatment, if only the government would let them.
Rowen recounts that a physician there stabbed himself with an Ebola-contaminated needle. That doctor had been trained in the Robins-Rowen protocol and called on another Sierra Leone physician, Kojo Carew, who was "in charge of maintaining the program and equipment/supplies brought and taught by Rowen/Robins," according to a Nov. 22 press release from the doctors.
The doctors had previously arrived in Sierra Leone, "at the invitation of President Ernest Bai Koroma," says Rowen. But the welcome apparently wore out, at least within the echelons of the nation's health ministry.
The Americans reported that the infected doctor had developed Ebola symptoms within two days, but that "after two days of treatment, all symptoms were gone."
The doctor opted out of taking an Ebola test in official Sierra Leone medical channels. A positive result would have landed him in an Ebola-confinement facility. That would have ended the ozone therapy, and probably led to his death, says Rowen.
According to their statement, "DIV ozone therapy is considered 'experimental' for Ebola at this time, and thus is not permitted in the treatment centers as yet."
Meanwhile, Rowen gave an interview to radio host Alex Jones on Nov. 7, where he detailed the DIV pushback from Sierra Leone officials.
Rowen told Jones that "the medical staff at the Ebola center jockeyed, they vied to get treatments to protect themselves."
"A call came in when we were there from the minister of health," says Rowen, "and then a second call came in from the deputy minister of health telling the military major—who was in charge of the government facility—'If you value your job, there will be no ozone treatments at the facility.'"
Rowen confirmed that version of events in his interview with the Bohemian. He left the country after that. "I blew up," he says. "I lost it. I could have been arrested.
"We left there feeling very rejected."
The Ebola-buster doctors put out a statement when they got back to the States. The infected Sierra Leone doctor, they report, "is in apparent good health and completely symptom-free."