New Orleans – A federal appeals court on Friday revived a lawsuit by three doctors who claim that the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) exceeded its authority in a campaign against the use of the anti-parasite drug ivermectin for treating COVID-19.
Ivermectin, which is commonly used to treat parasites in animals, has been touted by some conservatives as a potential treatment for COVID-19. However, the FDA has not approved it for this purpose due to a lack of evidence.
The court ruling focused on the FDA’s campaign against ivermectin as a COVID-19 treatment, noting that it failed to adequately acknowledge that the drug is sometimes prescribed for humans. The judges stated that the FDA can inform and apprise but not endorse or advise, and that the doctors have plausible claims that the FDA’s campaign went beyond its authority.
The three doctors who filed the lawsuit last year alleged that their reputations were harmed by the FDA’s campaign. One doctor lost admitting privileges at a Texas hospital, while another claimed to have lost positions at a medical school and a hospital. The lawsuit was dismissed in December, but the appeals court determined that the FDA’s alleged overstepping of its authority allowed the suit to proceed.
The ruling was made by a panel of judges appointed by former Presidents Donald Trump and George W. Bush.