Leadership from the great northern Indian state of Uttar Pradesh, home to the Taj Mahal, has decided to approve the use of ivermectin as a treatment and prevention of COVID-19. The drug will be used instead of hydroxychloroquine. Moving forward, ivermectin will be allocated to frontline health professionals treating patients in hospitals serving COVID-19. Yet another positive data point for the use of ivermectin as one approach to fighting COVID-19. Will the Western press care?
As reported in DNA India and multiple times in TrialSite, ivermectin is being successfully used across India as one economical way to stem the onslaught of the pandemic. Hospitals and institutions from AIIMS, Lady Hardinge Medical College, and Max Hospital to Lok Nayak, now routinely administer ivermectin to COVID-19 patients. The Indian Express reports that the switch and acceptance of ivermectin came as the result of positive results from a study at Agra.
If press accounts are entirely accurate, the health department in Uttar Pradesh and elsewhere are prescribing the anti-parasitic drug, even to those who just come into contact with COVID-19 patients, in a bid to prevent a more severe infection from occurring.
Often known as the “wonder drug,” the anti-parasitic drug is used to target parasitic infections from head lice and scabies to river blindness and other tropical diseases. The Monash University lab experiment started the interest in the drug as a treatment for COVID-19. In parts of the world where large pharmaceutical companies hold sway, the press avoids discussion of the drug.
DNA India raised a sample study conducted by Xi’ a Jiaotong University centering on 116 subjects who tested positive for COVID-19. The combination of ivermectin with doxycycline produced “far superior” results in the hydroxychloroquine and azithromycin therapy comparator in mild to moderate COVID-19 infections. TrialSite is now known worldwide as a chronicler of ivermectin research—search TrialSite for the many observational and randomized controlled studies ongoing.
ICMR Started Investigating Ivermectin in June
TrialSite reported that India’s ICMR commenced studies into ivermectin just a couple of months ago. The apex research agency investigates the U.S. FDA approved anti-parasitic drug as reported by ICMR scientist Nivedita Gupta.
Lack of Intellectual Curiosity is Telling
There is some form of press censorship on the topic of ivermectin. The only rumblings coming out of the U.S. or “West” is that it isn’t proven, used for animals, or could be dangerous in higher doses. No one declares it’s been called the “wonder drug” and that billions of prescriptions have been given in tropical countries. There is an unbelievable lack of intellectual curiosity, which only raises the interest levels for independent media platforms such as TrialSite.
What if all of these observational and case studies that purport positive results are representing truthful scenarios? What if the drug could, as is claimed by dozens of doctors interviewed, cut the time of infection down by, in some cases, 50% (note this is significantly superior to remdesivir if true) as well as the death rate?
There are major universities (University of Kentucky/Johns Hopkins University) in the United States conducting ivermectin studies. A study (albeit an observational one) at Broward County Health revealed materially beneficial results, including a lower death rate.
Why would MedinCell, a company that has received grant funds in the past for malaria work from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, plan to commercialize for COVID-19? Why would a top tropical health key opinion leader at Sheba Medical Center in Israel invest his and Sheba’s time in a randomized controlled trial?
How about the Leona M and Harry B Helmsley Charitable Trust (Helmsley Trust) in New York awarding funds to Monash University (again the first lab to study ivermectin in the context of COVID-19) to start identifying optimal dosing for clinical trials? Or, for that matter, a prominent Australian researcher, Thomas Borody, coming right out and declaring that the triple therapy of ivermectin, doxycycline, and zinc works to reduce the impact of COVID-19? Is he just a quack?
About 30 randomized controlled studies are ongoing, and a few of the results have been positive but not picked up on by any significant Western press. TrialSite has accumulated enough data points to take the position that some Western biopharma companies should investigate. TrialSite has committed top clinical trials monitoring resources to an effort in Florida to conduct a clinical trial: the momentum is growing to get such a study going via several hospitals in the United States.
There are too many data points not to. Even the FDA supports such an effort as they called out in their informational about ivermectin that randomized studies need to be undertaken.
But the lack of interest, despite numerous data points from around the world, has truly perplexed the mind. Unless the prospect of an economical and available treatment disrupts monetization imperatives? Or perhaps even a more primordial resistance from research elites?
But what if the first generation of vaccines have only limited impact? As reported by CNBC, Dr. Fauci is recently on the record that the chances of a vaccine working well, or being “highly effective,” is “not great.”
The economic, social, and political consequences of not having a broad-based, methodical and effective, multifaceted approach to deal with this pandemic, assuming no vaccine, are too great. TrialSite only advocates that at least one of the prominent Western biopharma step up and investigate ivermectin as possibly one way to more economically contribute to a multifaceted pandemic containment strategy. It isn’t a panacea, and it isn’t a cure. But the implication for not incorporating a more pragmatic approach to pandemic controls will convert to staggering public expenditures, including the massive transfer of public monies to the private sector. The taxpayer will ultimately be called on for repayment.