Ivermectin is approved for human use but doctors and pharmacists in St. Vincent and the Grenadines could land themselves in trouble if they prescribe or dispense it for treating COVID-19.
There is much debate internationally about the use of the drug, which is used to treat parasites in humans and animals, for the treatment of COVID.
However, the World Health Organization says that the drug should only be used to treat COVID-19 in clinical trials.
Two weeks ago, former speaker of the House of Assembly, Jomo Thomas, said that Ivermectin was part of his treatment regimen after being diagnosed as COVID-19 positive.
On Thursday, Chief Medical Officer, Dr. Simone Keizer-Beache, responding to a question about whether Ivermectin was approved for human use, said that the drug, at a certain dose, is approved for treating parasites in humans.
She, however, said that the ministry would have to determine whether it is included in the Organisation of Eastern Caribbean States formulary, which SVG, as a member, uses.
“But it is not approved, as you know, for use for COVID. It is not approved by the government of St. Vincent and the Grenadines, by the Drug Council, by any authority in St. Vincent,” the chief medical officer said.
“It is not approved for use in COVID. And anybody who has prescribed that for COVID or anybody who has dispensed it for COVID in St. Vincent and the Grenadines can be brought before the Pharmacy Council and the Medical Council because it’s not approved for use for COVID in St. Vincent. It’s approved for other things in humans, but not for use in COVID, whether as a prophylactic or as a treatment,” Keizer-Beache said.