DAVE ROSS

Are patients legally able to demand ivermectin treatment from hospitals?

Sep 2, 2021, 11:55 AM
COVID, ivermectin...
Nurses admit a patient transferred from the ICU COVID unit to the acute care COVID unit at Harborview Medical Center in Seattle, Washington. (Photo by Karen Ducey/Getty Images)
(Photo by Karen Ducey/Getty Images)

How far the can the government go in trying to protect you from your own decisions when it comes to this pandemic? One of the issues before the court is whether or not a patient can force a hospital to give them a drug — in this case, ivermectin — that they think will work even if the doctor forbids it.

Washington Poison Center warns ivermectin should not be used to treat COVID

The case in question is from Ohio, involving a COVID patient who wanted to be treated with ivermectin.

“There’s a lot at stake here in terms of hospitals being forced by judges to administer treatments that in their best medical judgment aren’t safe and aren’t effective,” said Rob McKenna, former state attorney general. “But nevertheless, this county judge in Ohio issued an order forcing the hospital where the plaintiff’s husband is staying to administer ivermectin. It’s a drug I had not heard of before because it’s an animal de-wormer that has been approved for human use to address parasitic infections, but it’s not an antiviral drug.”

There are a group of physicians, McKenna said, who are promoting ivermectin as a treatment for COVID-19 and as a drug you can take to avoid catching the virus.

“Unfortunately, the court’s order was published, but it only consisted of the order. It didn’t include any kind of reasoning or any legal analysis to explain why the judge believed he had the authority and the expertise to order the hospital to do something they clearly thought was inappropriate,” McKenna said.

The judge ordered that the patient get his way and that the hospital was required to give him this drug for a certain number of doses. His wife had been arguing on his behalf in court.

“This is a person who is very, very sick,” McKenna explained. “He tested positive on July 9. He was admitted to the ICU at the hospital July 15. He’s been intubated, placed on a ventilator Aug. 1. Then he developed a secondary infection. I think his wife is desperate and grasping at straws here.”

“And there’s a group out there that’s promoting I’ll say ‘novel treatments,’ including this group called the Frontline COVID-19 Critical Care Alliance, which is a nonprofit that lists this one doctor as a founding physician, a doctor who’s promoting ivermectin as a treatment,” McKenna continued. “And he’s claiming that the FDA and CDC are engaged in a conspiracy to block the use of ivermectin because he thinks they’re somehow trying to protect their use of vaccines. I don’t know if he thinks that using this deworming drug is going to knock out vaccines — it’s a little hard to follow.”

McKenna says the doctor in that group believes the CDC and FDA have been engaging in censorship on ivermectin’s merits.

“I would just point out that the CDC and FDA have actually been pretty aggressive,” McKenna said. “And most of the criticism I’ve seen is that they are allowing drugs to be used on emergency basis that haven’t been fully [approved].”

As McKenna points out, a major argument from people who are against the vaccine is because it’s only authorized under an emergency use authorization — though now Pfizer has been fully approved.

“That reminded me of all the different drugs they gave President Trump when he went to Walter Reed after he was diagnosed with COVID last year, and it reminds me that they were aggressive in his treatment and used a lot of drugs that were new and maybe were more fairly characterized as ‘experimental,’ including an antibody cocktail and other drugs,” McKenna said. “So I’m saying the CDC and FDA are not shy about trying new things, but there’s a lot of evidence that ivermectin, this deworming medicine, is not only not effective in treating COVID or preventing it, but it’s actually dangerous.”

In a case like the one in Ohio, what would happen to the hospital if the patient dies because of the forced treatment?

“I would think that being under a court order to administer it would create some sort of legal immunity,” McKenna said. “But more than that, the fact the wife is insisting on it, what claim is she going to have if her husband then dies? Except maybe a claim that, ‘well, if he’d gotten this drug sooner, he wouldn’t have died.’ But the problem with that argument is there’s just no scientific evidence to really back it up at all.”

“And by the way, it appears that the individual whose wife is trying to get him ivermectin was not vaccinated,” he added. “So he chose not to get vaccinated but now his wife is trying to get him this deworming drug.”

Ross: Running out of sympathy for the unvaccinated?

KIRO Radio’s Dave Ross replied that he’s stopped trying to understand “why people who are afraid of the vaccine are perfectly happy getting a drug that was designed for horses.”

“I agree,” McKenna said. “And I see my friend, the attorney general of Ohio, is trying to stay out of it. He, according to the news coverage, declined comment and referred inquiries to the board of pharmacy and veterinary board.”

“I don’t blame him,” Dave said.

“I don’t either,” McKenna agreed. “I would duck and cover on this one, too, if I were him.”

Listen to Seattle’s Morning News weekday mornings from 5 – 9 a.m. on KIRO Radio, 97.3 FM. Subscribe to the podcast here.

Dave Ross on KIRO Radio 97.3 FM
  • listen to dave rossTune in to KIRO Radio weekdays at 5am for Dave Ross on Seattle's Morning News.

Dave's Commentary

Dave Ross

unemployment...
Dave Ross

Ross: The real reason people don’t want to return to work

The extra unemployment benefits were cut off in September and most states elected not to continue them. Yet, millions of workers are still holding out.
2 days ago
Shatner, space...
Dave Ross

Ross: Shatner’s emotional response over trip to space exactly what we needed to hear

Space travel is a trip that every billionaire who thinks he’s a master of the universe needs to take as soon as possible.
3 days ago
Airlines...
Dave Ross

Ross: Choosing the fully-vaccinated airline that makes you feel safest

Two airlines – Southwest and American –both based in Texas, have decided to stick with their plans to require employees to get vaccinated.
4 days ago
Jan. 6, US Capitol...
MyNorthwest Staff

Committee investigating Jan. 6 pushes for details from White House aides

Washington Post's David Fahrenthold discusses the investigation into Jan. 6, with subpoenas now sent to some of former President Trump's closest aides.
5 days ago
TikTok...
Dave Ross

Ross: Down the rabbit hole as TikTok challenges take on life of their own

Just remember kids, you’re responsible for your conduct no matter what website put you up to it, whether it's TikTok or somewhere else.
5 days ago
Merck's...
MyNorthwest Staff

Mercer Island MD: New accessible COVID treatment is ‘necessary step’

A new COVID-19 treatment is on the horizon. Merck’s new COVID treatment — available in pill form — has been submitted to the FDA.
6 days ago

Sponsored Articles

...

How to Have a Stress-Free Real Estate Experience

The real estate industry has adapted and sellers are taking full advantage of new real estate models. One of which is Every Door Real Estate.
...
IQ Air

How Poor Air Quality Is Affecting Our Future Athletes

You cannot control your child’s breathing environment 100% of the time, but you can make a huge impact.
...
Swedish Health Services

Special Coverage: National Prostate Cancer Awareness Month

There are a wide variety of treatment options available for men with prostate cancer. The most technologically advanced treatment option in the Northwest is Stereotactic Body Radiation Therapy using the CyberKnife platform.
...
Marysville Police Department

Police Opportunities in a Growing, Supportive Washington Community

Marysville PD is looking for both lateral and entry level officers. Begin or continue your career in law enforcement for a growing, supportive community.
...
Comcast

Small, Minority-Owned Businesses in King County and Pierce County Can Now Apply For $10,000 Relief Grants Through Comcast RISE

Businesses in King County and Pierce County can apply beginning on October 1, 2021, at www.ComcastRISE.com for a chance to receive a $10,000 relief grant.
Courtesy of JWatch Photography....
Experience Anacortes

Summer Fun Activities in Anacortes

With minimal travel time required and every activity under the sun, Anacortes is the perfect vacation spot for all ages.
Are patients legally able to demand ivermectin treatment from hospitals?