Contrary to social media claims, ivermectin remains unapproved for the treatment of COVID-19 by U.S. health authorities. The National Institutes of Health (NIH) have not “silently approved” it.
A post on Instagram claims that the "NIH WEBSITE NOW SAYS IVERMECTIN IS APPROVED FOR [EMERGENCY USE AUTHORIZATION]" (here).
Claims on social media seemingly take out of context a table from the NIH displaying 'Characteristics of Antiviral Agents That Are Approved or Under Evaluation for the Treatment of COVID-19' (here), not understanding that it includes drugs still under evaluation, as clearly stated.
Current COVID-19 emergency use authorizations can be seen on the U.S. Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA) website, here .
Alison Hunt, press officer at the FDA told Reuters via email that “Currently, FDA has not authorized or approved ivermectin for use in preventing or treating COVID-19 in humans.”
So far, in terms of ivermectin approved for human use, only “a different version of ivermectin is approved by the FDA to treat people with parasitic infections including intestinal strongyloidiasis and onchocerciasis, as well as rosacea and head lice,” she said.
Guidance from the FDA (dated September 2021) (here) discourages the use of ivermectin as a treatment for COVID-19.
Clinical trials (here) evaluating ivermectin as a viable treatment for COVID-19 are ongoing.
In an emailed response to Reuters, NIH spokesman Ken Pekoc denied claims that the agency “quietly approved” ivermectin as an approved treatment for COVID-19. He directed Reuters to the page for ivermectin’s treatment guidelines (here), where use for COVID-19 is indeed not listed.
Pekoc asserted that the NIH guidelines are updated regularly to ensure they are current and that people can sign up for updates so they are notified whenever there is a change on the page: here .”
False. Linked document does not prove the U.S. government “silently approved” ivermectin as a treatment for COVID-19. As of this article’s publication, ivermectin treatment for COVID-19 remains in the clinical trial stage.
This article was produced by the Reuters Fact Check team. Read more about our fact-checking work here .
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