|Rep. Mike Defensor (Anakalusugan party-list) and Deputy Speaker Rodante Marcoleta (Sagip party-list) lead the distribution of anti-parasite drug ivermectin at the Matandang Balara’s barangay hall in Quezon City on April 29, 2021. (Photo by Boy Santos/ The Star)|
[Asia News = Reporter Reakkana] MANILA — President Rodrigo Duterte, while acknowledging that there is scant evidence to support the use of ivermectin as a treatment for COVID-19, refused to outrightly discourage the use of the antiparasitic drug for the viral disease and instead left it up to doctors to decide whether to treat patients with it,PhilStar reported. “If the doctor believes in good faith that it can help and the patient also believes in his heart that he will get well, we leave it up to you to decide,” Duterte said in a taped Cabinet meeting.
He continued, "It would be difficult for me to be blamed if I stop it and it turns out to be effective.” The president, however, pointed out that there are not enough published scientific studies on the use of ivermectin that would definitively conclude that it is safe and effective prevention, treatment, or cure for COVID-19. Unlike Duterte, the Department of Health has categorically advised against the use of ivermectin for COVID-19.
The United States Food and Drug Administration and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention have also said that people should not use ivermectin to treat or prevent COVID-19 and have warned that some people have been required medical attention after self-medicating with the drug.