SALLISAW, Okla. (KNWA/KFTA) — The controversial antiparasitic drug Ivermectin remains at the center of national discussion as individuals and doctors attempt to use it in its various forms as an alternative treatment for COVID-19. An Oklahoma hospital refuted a public statement by a local doctor who claimed patients experiencing complications from the drug are filling up all area emergency rooms.
Administrators from an eastern Oklahoma hospital spoke out on their treatment of Ivermectin overdose patients after one doctor claimed that an influx of patients overdosing on the over-the-counter version of the drug intended for horses has “backed up” the ERs.
Dr. Jason McElyea initially made the claim toward the end of last week.
“The ERs are so backed up that gunshot victims were having hard times getting to facilities where they can get definitive care and be treated,” McElyea said.
Administrators from Northeastern Health System – Sequoyah in Sallisaw, one of the hospitals where Dr. McElyea works, released a statement on their website claiming that Dr. McElyea’s statements aren’t true of their hospital, and he hasn’t worked at the facility in over two months.
Although Dr. Jason McElyea is not an employee of NHS Sequoyah, he is affiliated with a medical staffing group that provides coverage for our emergency room.
With that said, Dr. McElyea has not worked at our Sallisaw location in over 2 months.
NHS Sequoyah has not treated any patients due to complications related to taking ivermectin. This includes not treating any patients for ivermectin overdose.
All patients who have visited our emergency room have received medical attention as appropriate. Our hospital has not had to turn away any patients seeking emergency care.
We want to reassure our community that our staff is working hard to provide quality healthcare to all patients. We appreciate the opportunity to clarify this issue and as always, we value our community’s support.-NHS Sequoyah
While NHS Sequoyah administrators are defending their own hospital’s ER availability, Dr. McElyea reportedly also does work for INTEGRIS Health in Grove and McAlester Regional Health Center according to various online profiles.
When asked for comment on the situation, McAlester Regional’s media team gave a statement to KNWA/Fox24.
At this time we are not aware of any Ivermectin overdoses at our facility. Dr. McElyea is not employed with McAlester Regional Health Center.-McAlester Regional Health Center
INTEGRIS health has not responded to request for comment at this time.
The FDA and CDC both publicly denounced the use of Ivermectin for COVID-19 treatment.