PCP reiterates to stop public distribution of ivermectin due to possible adverse side effects

Aileen Cerrudo   •   May 3, 2021   •   239

MANILA, Philippines — The Philippine College of Physicians called for a stoppage of the distribution of the anti-parasitic drug ivermectin to the public due to possible adverse side effects.

The group strongly condemns the distribution of the said drug to the residents of Quezon City last week which was headed by Anakalusugan Partylist Representative Mike Defensor.

They said a person who takes ivermectin without proper guidance might endanger his or her health.

PCP President Dr. Mario Panaligan said studies about the safety of the drug as preventive measures against the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) are still undergoing.

Kung mayroon man po itong activity o sinasabing epekto doon sa virus like COVID-19 ito ay pinag-aaralan pa hanggang ngayon. Hindi naman sa sinasabi namin na wala namang epekto, kaya lang gusto sana naming makita kung ano ang totoong epekto nito (If ever there are activities or claims of its effects on a virus such as COVID-19, those are still being studied. We are not saying it has no effect but we want to see its real effects),” he said.

Pangalawa, mas maganda na siguraduhin na ligtas ito. Kasi iyon ang nakakabahala, lalong lalo na kung ang nangyayari kung pinamimigay na ito basta-basta (Secondly, it is better to ensure it is safe to use. Because what is alarming is when it was being indiscriminately distributed),” he added.

Ivermectin is still not available in pharmaceuticals because it is still not registered for human use. The human-grade version of the said drug is still undergoing clinical trials.

Doctors are also not allowed to prescribe the said drug. Only hospitals with compassionate special permits are allowed to import ivermectin for their patients.

Defensor and Sagip Partylist Deputy Speaker Congressman Rodante Marcoleta got the supply from a registered compound pharmaceutical.

Food and Drug Administration (FDA) Director General Usec. Eric Domingo said only a pharmacist is allowed to dispense drugs for a patient and not doctors.

Ang tamang gamot po have to be dispensed properly by a pharmacist dahil may batas po tayo (Medicines have to be dispensed properly by a pharmacist, as what the law says),he said.

The PCP also warned about the drug’s adverse effects which include nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, stomach pain, facial or limb swelling. Other adverse effects include dizziness, seizure, confusion, a sudden drop of blood which would potentially require hospitalization, and liver injury.

Alalahanin natin na may mga indications ito kung kailan dapat ibigay. At tsaka kung maalala natin kung binigyan man ito ng permission para sa compassionate use hindi naman ibig sabihin na basta-basta na lang ito magagamit lalong lalo na kung nasa labas ng ospital (Let us remember that there are indications when to dispense [a medicine]. And let us remember that just because there is permission for compassionate use, it does not mean we can just give it haphazardly, especially so outside the hospital),” Pangilinan said.

Experts also advised individuals who have taken ivermectin to immediately seek medical attention if they are experiencing any adverse effects from taking the medicine. -AAC (with reports from Janice Ingente)

Umano’y nasayang na supply ng COVID-19 vaccine sa Cotabato, iniimbestigahan na — DOH

Robie de Guzman   •   May 17, 2021

MANILA, Philippines — Iniimbestigahan na ng Department of Health (DOH) ang napaulat na pagkasayang umano ng supply ng COVID-19 vaccine na ipinadala sa bayan ng Makilala sa Cotabato.

Ayon kay Health Undersecretary Maria Rosario Vergeire, nasa 348 doses ng Sinovac COVID-19 vaccines ang umano’y nasayang matapos mapabayaan sa loob ng freezer nang magkaroon ng power outage sa lugar.

Paalala naman ng kagawaran sa mga lokal na pamahalaan na bantayang maigi ang kanilang COVID-19 vaccine supply upang matiyak ang wastong temperature sa pag-iimbak nito.

“Hindi lang po isang beses isang araw ang ginagawang pagmo-monitor ng temperatura ng bakuna. Ito po ay ginagawa kada apat na oras,” ani Vergeire.

Nakipag-ugnayan na aniya sila sa lokal na pamahalaan kaugnay ng insidente.

“As to the sanctions, they were already advised and the local government has been coordinated with by our regional Office,” ang wika ni Vergeire. – RRD (mula sa ulat ni Correspondent Aiko Miguel)

IATF upgrades mayors, governors in COVID-19 vaccination priority list

Robie de Guzman   •   May 17, 2021

MANILA, Philippines — The Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF-MEID) has included mayors and governors in the top priority group for the government’s COVID-19 vaccination.

Under Resolution No. 115-B approved on Monday, the IATF said all governors and mayors or all local chief executives will now be among the priority group A1.5 for vaccination, “regardless of the risk classification of their respective local government units (LGU).

The country has around 1,634 provincial governors and city and municipal mayors.  They were previously under the fourth sector (A4 category) composed of essential workers.

The first sector includes healthcare workers, the second priority group is composed of senior citizens while the third sector includes persons with co-morbidities.

The Philippines has so far administered over two million vaccine doses since the government rolled out its immunization program on March 1.

Phl logs 5,790 new COVID-19 cases, bringing total to 1,143,963

Maris Federez   •   May 17, 2021

MANILA, Philippines — The Department of Health (DOH) on Sunday confirmed that the Philippines has recorded 5,790 new cases of the coronavirus disease, bringing the active cases to 54,904.

This means that the country has recorded a total of 1,143, 963 COVID-19 cases as of Sunday, 4 pm.

The DOH also reported 7,541 new recoveries. This has brought the total number of Filipinos who recovered from the viral infection to 1,069,868.

The health department also logged 140 more deaths from the fatal disease,  DOHbringing the country’s COVID-19 death toll to 19,191.

The DOH said the low number of new cases was due to the low testing output of laboratories on May 14.

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