(File Photo)

The Concerned Doctors and Citizens of the Philippines (CDC Ph) is asking the Department of Health (DOH) to make publicly available the criteria used by the government agency to determine which studies and experts are credible.

This request comes after DOH Undersecretary Ma. Rosario Vergeire recently announced that the agency has rejected the recommendation of the British Ivermectin Research Development (BIRD) Group for the Philippine government to adopt the use of Ivermectin in early treatment against COVID-19.

The BIRD Group is an international non-profit organization campaigning for the approval and use of safe medicines such as Ivermectin to prevent and cure COVID-19 around the world. Its membership includes 35 doctors and medical researchers from the UK; three each from Canada, the US, and Australia; and medical practitioners from Argentina, South Africa, Belgium, France, Hungary, India, Japan, Mexico, Nigeria, Peru, and The Philippines.

“There must be a system of accountability and transparency to publicly explain which studies and experts are deemed ‘credible’ by the DOH,” said Homer Lim, M.D., president of CDC Ph. “Only then can the Filipino people be assured that the health advisories of the DOH are not swayed by unconscious or conscious bias.”

Randomized controlled trials show Ivermectin is effective as prophylaxis and early treatment

Lim questioned Vergeire’s assertion that medical consensus and randomized controlled trials both indicate that Ivermectin is ineffective in treating COVID-19.

According to Lim, as of mid-September, a meta-analysis of 32 studies conducted by 387 doctors and medical researchers, involving 6,648 patients showed that Ivermectin was 84 percent effective as prophylaxis and 63 percent effective as an early treatment in reducing mortality rates and severe symptoms associated with COVID-19.

Lim cited https://ivmmeta.com/, the website where results of clinical trials on Ivermectin are freely available for review to the general public, as the source of the meta-analysis.

Importance of transparency
According to Lim, the Hippocratic Oath requires all medical practitioners to provide the highest level of healthcare to all patients, and the only way to succeed at this is if regulatory bodies like the DOH make available to the general public affordable, life-saving options like Ivermectin.

“In the face of mounting scientific evidence on the effectiveness of Ivermectin against COVID-19, the DOH has chosen to dismiss the advice from an international organization, without providing an official reasoned response,” Lim said.

“Only a  transparent statement detailing the medical criteria of the DOH in determining what is and is not credible will allow professionals from the Philippine medical community to independently verify whether or not the agency is indeed working in the best interests of the Filipino people,” Lim concluded.

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