When an Oklahoma doctor told the media horror stories about hospitals jammed with patients who self-medicated themselves with ivermectin right into the emergency room, it was a hit.
“The ERs are so backed up that gunshot victims were having hard times getting to facilities where they can get definitive care and be treated,” Dr. Jason McElyea said.
But the bombshell report soon went bust. The doctor who offered a graphic depiction of chaos had not been on the job for a while, and the hospital where he worked said there was no truth to the claim that ivermectin patients were crowding out everyone else.
“Although Dr. Jason McElyea is not an employee of NHS Sequoyah, he is affiliated with a medical staffing group that provides coverage for our emergency room. With that said, Dr. McElyea has not worked at our Sallisaw location in over 2 months,” read the statement from Northeastern Hospital System Sequoyah.
“NHS Sequoyah has not treated any patients due to complications related to taking ivermectin. This includes not treating any patients for ivermectin overdose,” the statement read.
“All patients who have visited our emergency room have received medical attention as appropriate. Our hospital has not had to turn away any patients seeking emergency care.”
“We want to reassure our community that our staff is working hard to provide quality healthcare to all patients. We appreciate the opportunity to clarify this issue and as always, we value our community’s support,” the statement concluded.
McElyea had painted those taking ivermectin as farmers who figured they could take the medicine they gave their animals.
“Growing up in a small town, rural area, we’ve all accidentally been exposed to ivermectin at some time. So, it’s something people are familiar with. Because of those accidental sticks, when trying to inoculate cattle, they’re less afraid of it,” he said, according to KFOR.
He claimed ambulances were paralyzed with the load of ivermectin cases.
“All of their ambulances are stuck at the hospital waiting for a bed to open so they can take the patient in and they don’t have any, that’s it,” said McElyea. “If there’s no ambulance to take the call, there’s no ambulance to come to the call.”
McElyea said only doctors should decide what medicines anyone should take.
“You have to ask yourself, ‘If I take this medicine, what am I going to do if something bad happens?’ What’s your next step, what’s your backup plan?” the doctor said.
“If you’re going to take a medicine that could affect your health, do it with a doctor on board. Make those decisions with a thoroughly vetted opinion. There’s a lot of schooling that goes into that. It’s not just something you look on the internet for and decide if it’s the right dose.”
The Food and Drug Administration has cautioned against taking the animal dewormer as a treatment for COVID-19. Podcaster Joe Rogan recently listed ivermectin as one of the drugs he took when he tested positive for the virus. He has since said he has tested negative.