Marcoleta defends “Ivermectin Pan-three”, including doctors who helped in their “medical mission”

Lawmaker says reactions against Ivermectin use already expected as big business of pharma firms affected


(Eagle News) – House Deputy Speaker Rodante Marcoleta defended the distribution of Ivermectin to a depressed community in Quezon City, including the doctors who helped them in the event called “Ivermectin Pan-three”.

In an interview with the Eagle News Service program Balitalakayan aired on NET 25 on Tuesday, May 4, Marcoleta said he is expecting the barrage of criticisms and calls for a probe that various medical organizations and pharmaceutical groups have demanded because of their activity last week.

Yan ay inaasahan namin dahil ang alam mo ang pharmaceutical industry sa bansa ay malaki. Ito ay estimated na P4 billion industry per annum,” he said in the interview.

Marcoleta said that the primary purpose of their medical mission was to help the poor, including senior citizens who are the most vulnerable to COVID-19.

He also defended the doctors who issued prescription receipts during the event last April 29 amid criticisms from other medical groups

Marcoleta said that the doctors did not write their prescription on prescription pads since they were already distributing the Ivermectin drug directly to the people during their medical mission, citing what the doctors who were with them then had told him.

He said the doctors were also ready to face any probe that the government would be doing.

Sa mga doctor na kasama namin ay handa silang magpa-imbestiga kung kinakailangan. Ang pagkakaalam nila at ang pagkakaunawa rin namin wala kaming ginawang masama sapagkat ang aming intensyon ay makatulong lang sa mga tao na wala talagang magamit na gamot,” the Sagip-Partylist solon said.

-House hearing on May 17-

He said that Congress would also hold a hearing on May 17 once sessions resume regarding COVID-19, Ivermectin use, and how the government responded to the crisis, and there they would be asked on their alleged failure to properly address the situation.

Marcoleta said that the situation right now is one of emergency, and guidelines that are applicable during normal times should not necessarily be applied all the time, especially during times of crisis.

He also cited the various clinical trials abroad regarding the alleged effectivity of Ivermectin against COVID-19.

-PMA warning-

The Philippine Medical Association (PMA) earlier issued a statement reiterating its warning that the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) had already “cautioned” the manufacture and dispensing of unregistered drugs would be prosecuted as violation of the FDA Act of 2009.

The PMA said that the Ivermectin use outside of the five hospitals where the Ivermectin had been allowed to be used for “compassionate use” is not allowed.
“Ivermectin must be prescribed and used within the same hospital and the prescribing doctor must inform the patient of this compassionate use category with unproven end result,” the PMA statement said.

“The drug Ivermectin may not be prescribed by any physician outside the designated authorized hospitals. Its prescription as a prophylactic medicine against COVID-19 (is) strongly not advised,” it said.

The “Ivermectin Pan-three” activity of of Rep. Marcoleta and Anakalusugan Partylist Rep. Defensor was held on April 29 to residents of Bgy. Matandang Balara in Quezon City, which has one of the highest number of COVID-19 cases in the city.

The distribution of the drug Ivermectin was initially allowed by the FDA provided that there would be doctors that would be involved in giving guidance and prescription to residents who would be given the drug.

(Eagle News Service)