CPhA statement on ivermectin
September 2, 2021 (Ottawa): As we enter the fourth wave of the COVID-19 pandemic, attention has once again been focused on possible off-label treatments that could prevent or mitigate the disease, in this case the drug ivermectin. The Canadian Pharmacists Association (CPhA) continues to stress that the most effective intervention in preventing COVID-19 is immunization, and that all Health Canada–approved vaccines provide a high level of protection.
Marketed as a drug to treat a number of parasitic diseases in humans, the use of ivermectin has been studied and has failed to show a benefit in the treatment of people with COVID-19. Also used as a veterinary drug, this medication has been accessed through veterinary/livestock medication distribution channels. Given the drug’s serious side effects at higher doses, this usage has the potential to cause significant health risks.
Increased demand driven by inappropriate use of ivermectin has led to a limited supply in Canada for patients who need it to effectively treat indicated conditions. Several trusted health sources, including Health Canada and the World Health Organization, continue to warn against the use of ivermectin to prevent or treat COVID-19 given the lack of evidence to support efficacy and possible side effects. CPhA supports this approach and once again encourages all Canadians to get the COVID-19 vaccine as soon as they are able.
About the Canadian Pharmacists Association
The Canadian Pharmacists Association (CPhA) is the uniting national voice of pharmacy and the pharmacist profession in Canada. As pharmacists undertake an enhanced role in the delivery of health care services, CPhA ensures that the profession is recognized as a national leader in health care, influencing the policies, programs, budgets and initiatives affecting the profession and the health of Canadians.
For more information, please contact:
Strategic Communications Manager
Canadian Pharmacists Association