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    Spike in poisonings from livestock deworming drug reported in Florida

    A health worker shows a bottle of Ivermectin in Cali, Colombia, on July 21, 2020. (Photo by Luis ROBAYO / AFP) (Photo by LUIS ROBAYO/AFP via Getty Images)

    TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WFLA) — Florida Agriculture Commissioner Nikki Fried is warning residents to avoid trying a horse deworming drug to treat COVID-19 after a spike in poisonings.

    Both the U.S. Food and Drug Administration and the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention have issued warnings to not take the drug ivermectin — a type of medication meant for livestock, not humans.

    Tuesday the Florida Poison Control Center it treated 27 patients in August for ivermectin.

    “The promotion of inappropriate use of this drug is irresponsible, reckless, and dangerous,” Fried said. “There is no public health or scientific support for its use to treat or prevent COVID-19, and there are serious safety concerns when it comes to self-medicating and humans using medications intended for animals. Individuals should look to their medical doctors when it comes to medical treatments – not online quacks.”

    Florida does have an approved, no-cost treatment for COVID-19 through the use of monoclonal antibodies. You can find a site near you by visiting this website.

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