Advocate Aurora Health is threatening to punish doctors who prescribe ivermectin to COVID-19 patients, an internal email provided to "The Dan O'Donnell Show" reveals.
"I have been receiving anecdotal reports of specific instances in which physicians and APCs from within the medical group have prescribed the anti-parasitic medication ivermectin to treat acute presentations of COVID-19," Aurora Medical Group President and Chief Medical Officer Dr. Jeff Bahr wrote to physicians. Our own review of data from within Epic confirms that this is occurring.
"Ongoing prescribing of ivermectin for the treatment of COVID-19 will result in ambulatory peer review and possible disciplinary action through established medical group processes."
Dr. Bahr added that "prescriptions for ivermectin as a treatment for COVID-19 will not be filled by Aurora outpatient pharmacies."
A whistleblower who provided this directive to "The Dan O'Donnell Show" described it as "outrageous," and another source decried it as impeding the ability of Advocate Aurora's doctors to use their best judgment in treating COVID-19.
Ivermectin, which was developed several decades ago as an anti-parasitic drug, is included on the World Health Organization's "List of Essential Medicines" and won its creators the 2015 Nobel Prize in Medicine. Earlier this year, however, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) issued a special warning against its use in treating COVID-19.
"While it has been shown that ivermectin has in vitro activity against SARS-CoV-2, it has been at concentrations much higher than those achievable in humans with traditional ivermectin dosing," Dr. Bahr noted in his email to Advocate Aurora doctors. "Studies currently being used to support this prescribing activity has been uncontrolled, observational, non-randomized, and unpublished."
Doctors across the country have reported success in treating COVID patients with ivermectin, and approximately 70 clinical trials have been evaluating its effectiveness. Early evidence seems to indicate that it may prove to be an effective treatment.
"We support our physicians in denying all patient requests for ivermectin for COVID-19 infection based on evidence-based prescribing practices and guidance from the FDA, the CDC, the National Institutes of Health and the Infectious Diseases Society of America," Advocate Aurora Health said in a statement to "The Dan O'Donnell Show." "We continue to encourage everyone who is eligible to get vaccinated as it’s our way out of this pandemic."
Dr. Bahr's full email to Advocate Aurora Staff: