THE Department of Health (DOH) on Saturday, April 10, 2021, stressed that ivermectin has not been approved for commercial use as treatment for coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) in the country.
The compassionate special permit (CSP) that the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) issued is only for one hospital. No one is allowed to sell or distribute the antiparasitic drug.
"The compassionate special permit is a clearance or an authority given by FDA to specific doctors or to specific hospitals only," DOH Undersecretary Maria Rosario Vergeire said in a televised public briefing.
"It will be the doctor, who is accountable for the specific patient that will use it as indicated in their application to the FDA,” she added.
She said the CSP is not the same as a a Certificate of Product Registration (CPR) for drug products.
"This is not a form of registration of medicines. This means, you still cannot distribute, sell, or even market these kinds of medicines (with CSP)," said Vergeire.
She warned the public against taking ivermectin indiscriminately.
"Its side effects, if given at that low dose, would be gastrointestinal symptoms. But there are also those that say, if taken in high doses, there could be neurological side effects. So we really need to be careful," said Vergeire. (HDT / SunStar Philippines)