Public urged to await FDA move on application for Ivermectin use

By Azer Parrocha

April 5, 2021, 7:55 pm

MANILA – Malacañang on Monday urged the public to wait for the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to act on an application for the use of Ivermectin as a potential anti-Covid medication.

Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque made this statement after rejecting rumors that President Rodrigo Duterte had ordered the Department of Health (DOH) to authorize the use of Ivermectin.

Hindi po ‘no. Ang nangyari is nag-meeting po noong Sabado ang IATF for almost 10 hours and one of the agenda na na-discuss po iyong Ivermectin (He did not. What happened is the IATF had a meeting on Saturday that lasted for almost 10 hours and one of the agendas we discussed was Ivermectin),” he said in a Palace press briefing.

Citing FDA Director General Eric Domingo, Roque said a firm has already applied for the compassionate use of Ivermectin.

“Ni-report po ni Usec. Domingo, iyong Director General ng ating FDA, na mayroon na pong nag-apply ngayon ‘no for compassionate use ng Ivermectin. (Usec. Domingo, Director General of the FDA said that there is an application for the compassionate use of Ivermectin),” he said.

Roque, however, reminded the public to wait for FDA action on the application.

“Puwede na pong i-process iyan ng FDA, hindi gaya dati na wala pong nag-a-apply. So ‘antayin na lang po natin ang aksiyon ng FDA sa mga naisampa nang aplikasyon for Ivermectin (The FDA can process that application, unlike before when nobody has applied for it yet. So let’s wait for the FDA action on the application for the use of Ivermectin),” he added.

On March 26, the DOH and the FDA warned against the purchase and use of Ivermectin veterinary products to treat Covid-19.

In a joint announcement, the two agencies said the FDA has not received any applications for the use of Ivermectin for Covid-19 treatment under the Compassionate Special Permit.

“At present, Ivermectin veterinary products are only approved for use in the prevention of heartworm disease and treatment of internal and external parasites in certain animal species,” the announcement read.

The DOH earlier warned doctors who prescribe the use of Ivermectin as a treatment for Covid-19 that their names will be submitted to the Professional Regulation Commission (PRC), and if found guilty, may have their licenses revoked.

It said the FDA has only evaluated Ivermectin’s safety and efficacy in particular species in its label and that using the product in humans “can cause serious harm”.

On March 30, Anti-Red Tape Authority (ARTA) director-general Jeremiah Belgica said two local pharmaceutical companies namely Lloyd Laboratories Inc. and Pascual Laboratories Inc. have expressed willingness to apply before the FDA an application to produce Ivermectin for human use.

Currently, the only registered Ivermectin products in the country are used for certain animal species to treat internal and external parasites as well as prevention of heartworm disease. (PNA)