AUTHORITIES seized 20,000 pieces of ivermectin tablets and other undeclared regulated drugs from a shipment declared as food supplements, multivitamin and multi-mineral capsules at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA).
In a statement on Thursday, May 6, 2021, the Bureau of Customs (BOC) said the shipment was imported from New Delhi, India by Finstad Inc.
Ivermectin, an antiparasitic drug for animals, is being touted as potential treatment for coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19).
It is not approved for use as Covid-19 treatment in humans in the Philippines, but the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has issued a compassionate special permit to two hospitals for the use of the drug.
FDA Director General Eric Domingo had stressed that the drug is not approved for emergency use.
If it were authorized, Director Jesusa Joyce N. Cirunay of the Center for Drug Regulation and Research said the importer would have needed to present a license to operate, and emergency use authorization (EUA) or certificate of product registration. (Third Anne Peralta-Malonzo / SunStar Philippines)