Attorney General Alan Wilson on Feb. 11 released an opinion confirming South Carolina physicians have the authority to prescribe “off-label” drugs like ivermectin and hydroxychloroquine to treat COVID as long as informed consent is given to their patients.
“Our doctors, as well as their patients, need to know that doctors have the right to make important medical decisions, as long as they have the informed consent of their patients,” Wilson said. “In fighting COVID, the doctor should be given the broadest possible leeway.”
Wilson said it is far beyond his office’s expertise to remark on whether “off-label” medications are appropriate for the treatment or prevention of COVID specifically, but in South Carolina, “state law strongly protects the medical judgment of the physician in this circumstance.”
“It is clear that an attending physician possesses especially broad discretion to prescribe what he or she deems the appropriate medication in a given situation,” Alan wrote.
While the opinion does not provide a determination of the appropriateness of a prescription for Ivermectin or hydroxychloroquine as that’s a decision for the patient’s physician to make, “Nevertheless, we can point out, and fully support, the general law protecting the physician’s decision, particularly if informed consent is obtained.”
On Oct. 15, Nebraska Attorney General Doug Peterson filed a legal opinion with the Dept. of Justice stating Nebraska healthcare providers could legally prescribe off-label medications like Ivermectin and hydroxychloroquine for the treatment of COVID, so long as they obtain informed consent from the patient.
Peterson’s office emphasized it was not recommending any specific treatment for COVID but concluded available evidence suggests these off-label drugs might work for some people.
Peterson said allowing physicians to consider early treatments would free them to evaluate additional tools that could save lives, keep patients out of hospitals and provide relief for an already strained healthcare system.
In his legal opinion, Peterson went into impressive detail on the evidence of Ivermectin, showing the drug demonstrated striking effectiveness in preventing and treating COVID, and any side effects were primarily minor and transient.
In the decade leading up to the COVID pandemic, Peterson found numerous studies confirming Ivermectin’s antiviral activity against several RNA viruses by blocking the nuclear trafficking of viral proteins, adding to 50 years of research confirming Ivermectin’s antiviral effects.
The two opinions (South Carolina and Nebraska) together reinforce the physician’s right to prescribe off-label medications for the prevention and treatment of COVID, as long as informed consent is provided. Meanwhile, many other states are penalizing physicians and revoking their licenses for saving the lives of their patients through these off-label drugs.