SINGAPORE – The Singapore Medical Council (SMC) has blocked a doctor from promoting or prescribing the drug ivermectin for the treatment or prevention of Covid-19.
The SMC is investigating the behavior of GP Dr Yang Ing Woei after he was alerted by the Ministry of Health (MOH) on November 25 last year.
An Interim Orders Committee (IOC) ruled that “it was necessary for the protection of members of the public and in the public interest” to impose an 18-month interim injunction on him from March 9, or until his investigation is complete.
He must comply with the terms of the injunction to continue practicing.
Ivermectin is a prescription medication for the treatment of parasitic worm infections. However, when Covid-19 swept the world in 2020, several groups, including some doctors, began promoting it as a miracle cure for coronavirus.
Not only has this drug not been proven effective against Covid-19, but it can cause serious side effects such as liver damage, a sudden drop in blood pressure, and a severe skin rash.
Authorities here have intercepted more than 20,000 illegally imported ivermectin tablets.
The Ministry of Health told the SMC that Dr Yang had sent WhatsApp messages containing “unverified and misleading information” about the effectiveness of ivermectin in preventing or treating Covid-19 to a chat group over of 200 members.
In a statement issued on March 14, the SMC said: “In particular, Dr. Yang falsely claimed to have prescribed ivermectin to his patients who suffered from Covid-19 (when he did not actually do so). ) and that these patients were subsequently discharged from the hospital’s intensive care unit and high-dependency unit within three days.”
The IOC has decided to allow Dr. Yang to continue his practice while investigations are ongoing, subject to the following conditions:
– It cannot disseminate information against the effectiveness of Covid-19 vaccines, nor sell, supply or promote the use of ivermectin, nor promote any other drug, therapeutic product or vaccine not approved by the Authority of health sciences to treat or prevent Covid-19.
– He is not allowed to do any of this on any website, social media platforms or closed messaging systems, and should delete such posts when reasonably possible.
Dr. Yang may only “recommend, prescribe, supply, or administer ivermectin to a patient” with the prior approval of a properly registered physician with a valid practicing certificate. In such a case, he must keep a log with details which he must submit to the SMC within five calendar days.