Joel Hirschhorn spent his Jan. 24 WorldNetDaily column complaining about various approved treatments flr COVID recommended by the National Institutes of Health, whining that "What our government is telling physicians is just plain idiotic." He particularly lashed out the antiviral molnupiravir, which he called "absolutely ludicrous" and claimed "has a terrible level of effectiveness and that has not been proven safe. An absolutely awful choice." Back in October, Hirschhorn falsely claimed the molnupiravir was a copy of ivermectin.
Speaking of ivermectin, Hirschhorn is still carrying a torch for that dubious drug (which, by the way, is not an antiviral):
What is most obscene about what NIH tells doctors is that it still refuses to include ivermectin or hydroxychloroquine as treatment options. It ignores the extremely successful treatment protocols of front-line doctors like Dr. Fareed and Dr. Zelenko that do not include any of the four NIH preferences.
Of special importance is that NIH has ignored a recent detailed study of ivermectin that reached these conclusions: "… [L]arge reductions in COVID-19 deaths are possible using ivermectin. Using ivermectin early in the clinical course may reduce numbers progressing to severe disease. The apparent safety and low cost suggest that ivermectin is likely to have a significant impact on the SARS-CoV-2 pandemic globally." An even newer study found remarkable benefits of using ivermectin, including a 68% reduction in mortality and 56% reduction in hospitalization. NIH is not respecting positive results for ivermectin, and the agency's guidelines could make it difficult for states trying to make ivermectin easily available.
Hirschhorn has censored the fact that the studies he cites have serious issues. Regarding the first study -- actually a meta-analysis, or a summary of other studies -- some of the studies cited were not peer-reviewed, the higher-quality studies did not show ivermectin to be effective, and the researchers are affiliated with a pro-ivermectin group. The second study has flaws as well, lacking basic information on its participants or even exactly who was or was not taking ivermectin; also, two of its authors received funding from an ivermectin manufacturer, a major conflict of interest.
The name-drops are of Vladimir Zelenko, an early promoter of the similarly dubious drug hydroxychloroquine whom WND embraced early, and George Fareed, who along with a fellow California doctor, Brian Tyson, developed an ivermectin-centric treatment plan that's getting promotion in the right-wing circles Hirschhorn hangs out in but which their fellow doctors have disavowed.
Nevertheless, Hirschhorn concluded his column by ranting at the NIH (italics are his):
What a waste of U.S. taxpayer money is this evil and criminal Fauci organization.The real message for the public: Do not trust the government to effectively protect your life. Public health protection in the U.S. is a disgrace. What NIH is saying is really insulting disinformation.
Speak for yourself, Joel.