Butler County judge orders hospital to treat COVID-19 patient with Ivermectin

HAMILTON — A Butler County judge ruled that doctors at a West Chester hospital must treat a COVID-19 patient with Ivermectin at the patient’s request, a drug that’s commonly used as a livestock dewormer and comes with a warning against using it as a COVID-19 treatment from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.

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Butler County Judge Gregory Howard wrote in a decision last week that doctors treating 51-year-old Jeffery Smith “shall immediately administer Ivermectin” to Smith, according to our news partners WCPO-TV in Cincinnati. The ruling said Smith will receive 30mg of the drug for three weeks, the station reported, citing court records.

The case was brought to court by Smith’s wife and guardian, Julie, after the man was hospitalized with COVID-19.

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In the past few weeks, Ivermectin has grown in popularity as a treatment to COVID-19, despite the FDA’s warning against taking it.

“Taking large doses of this drug is dangerous and can cause serious harm,” the FDA said in a statement titled ‘Why You Should Not Use Ivermectin to Treat or Prevent COVID-19.’

“You are not a horse. You are not a cow. Seriously, y’all. Stop it,” an FDA spokesperson said in a viral tweet last week.

The FDA has approved the drug to be used in patients with intestinal strongyloidiasis and onchocerciasis, two conditions caused by parasitic worms, as well as head lice, WCPO-TV reports. However, the FDA has not approved the drug as a treatment for COVID-19 which is a viral disease.

“Animal drugs are often highly concentrated because they are used for large animals like horses and cows, which can weigh a lot more than we do—a ton or more,” the FDA wrote. “Such high doses can be highly toxic in humans.”