Use of Ivermectin a continuous hot topic

By Dzulkifli Abdul Razak – July 16, 2021 @ 7:05pm

There are already reportedly many countries and regions around the world implementing successful preventative and Covid-19 treatment programmes with Ivermectin. Among the notables are Peru, Paraguay, large regions of India, and Macedonia.

If you are wondering why only developing countries are involved, this is precisely the reason, because the “poorer” countries are mostly left out in the global Covid-19 vaccine rollout, dominated by what is termed as vaccine “nationalism” and “apartheid” leading to the continued disparities worldwide.

Ivermectin, it is argued, represents an important “alternative” treatment for Covid-19 that is readily available, low cost and low risk being an established medicine that many have been using for decades, albeit for different indication(s).

More recently, a number of “new” interests from various sectors have emerged especially among those who have long believed in the “benefits” that could be delivered by the said medicine.

To be sure, Ivermectin is not new at all, appearing way back 40 years ago as an effective anti-parasitic drug with a robust safety record. It was co-discovered by Dr Satoshi Omura, who won the 2015 Nobel Prize in Medicine for the drug.

In February 2021, the British Ivermectin Recommendation Development (BIRD), an international meeting of physicians, researchers, specialists, and patients, reached a consensus recommendation that ivermectin, a verifiably safe and widely available oral medicine, be immediately deployed early and globally.

This call rested in part on claims of numerous, well-documented studies reporting that Ivermectin use reduces the risk of contracting Covid-19 by over 90 per cent and mortality by 68 to 91 per cent.

Similar conclusion has also been reached by an increasing number of expert groups from different parts of the world. However, they alleged being “forced to publicly expose what we believe can only be described as a ‘disinformation’ campaign astonishingly waged with full cooperation of those authorities whose mission is to maintain the integrity of scientific research and protect public health.”

Numerous examples of the above disinformation tactics by corporations and policymakers were cited, particularly within the pharmaceutical industry.

Some examples like: FDA posted notices overstating the dangers of Ivermectin and against use of Ivermectin; despite not having reviewed the trials data, WHO Panel avoids bringing Ivermectin evidence to a vote; numerous Big Pharma concerns that Ivermectin’s potential as an alternative to vaccines may increase vaccine hesitancy and disrupt mass vaccination rollouts, just to name a few.

Meanwhile, in a 15-page article titled “The Drug That Cracked Covid” by Michael Capuzzo, a New York Times best-selling author and a six-time Pulitzer-nominated journalist, chronicles the gargantuan struggle being waged by frontline doctors on all continents to get Ivermectin approved as a Covid-19 treatment.

According to Capuzzo, there are “hundreds of thousands, actually millions, of people around the world, from Uttar Pradesh in India to Peru to Brazil, who are living and not dying.”

Yet, media outlets have done little to “debunk” the negative notions against Ivermectin as an effective, easily accessible and affordable treatment for Covid-19. They have parroted the arguments laid out by health regulators around the world that there just is not enough evidence to justify its use.

Yet, Capuzzo, as a reporter, “saw with [his] own eyes the other side [of the story]” that has gone unreported, of the many patients in the US whose lives have been saved by Ivermectin. “I really wish the world could see both sides,” he laments. But unfortunately, most reporters are not interested in telling the other side of the story. Even if they were, their publishers would probably refuse to publish it.

Perhaps it is time to allow its use for the coronavirus since, in the past year, the list of countries that use Ivermectin for the prevention and treatment of the virus has grown to include the Czech Republic, Bolivia, Honduras, Slovakia, South Africa, and Zimbabwe, among others.

The calling for Ivermectin’s approval in every country of the world has even gone louder. After all, since its discovery, some 4 billion doses of Ivermectin have been given worldwide. And it is accepted in the WHO Model List of Essential Medicines.

On that account, July 24, 2021, has been announced as a day to “celebrate” Ivermectin. Arguably, the medicine has brought immeasurable benefit to humanity.

There is always a glimmer of hope to use it to successfully overcome several other human diseases and new uses for it are continually being found. Hopefully, this piece will set the pace for a more courageous narrative.


The writer, an NST columnist for more than 20 years, is International Islamic University Malaysia rector

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