Hocus bogus

The Covid-19 virus inspired the development of vaccines against the disease, as well as the use of dubious drugs.

Ivermectin was once in demand as a remedy for symptoms of coronavirus infection. However, the United States Food and Drug Administration has not authorized or approved its use in preventing or treating Covid-19 in humans or animals.

“Ivermectin is approved for human use to treat infections caused by some parasitic worms and head lice and skin conditions like rosacea,” the FDA said on its website.

In the Philippines, the Dangerous Drugs Board allowed last year the traditional Chinese medicine named Lianhua Qingwen to be sold without prescription for one year.

The herbal capsules can reportedly treat “fever, sore throat, cough, stuffy or runny nose, aversion to cold, muscle soreness, headache, wheezing,” which are all symptoms of Covid-19 infection, according to Business Mirror.

China approved the concoction — made up of ingredients like honeysuckle and apricot seeds — as a Covid-19 treatment in 2020, and it was distributed to Shanghai residents during the city’s outbreak this year, Agence France-Presse reported.

Chinese pharmaceutical giant DXY, however, questioned the value of Lianhua Qingwen in a post on its medical information website.

The United States and other countries have warned there is no evidence Lianhua Qingwen works to prevent or cure Covid-19, even as it has increasingly been promoted by government authorities in China and Hong Kong, according to AFP. Moreover, the US FDA has not approved Lianhua Qingwen and that coronavirus-related claims about it were “not supported by competent and reliable scientific evidence,” it added.

Another controversial Covid-19 drug is the Miracle Mineral Solution sold by Mark Grenon, the self-proclaimed bishop of Florida church Genesis II Church of Health and Healing. MMS raised red flags though.

For one, Grenon did the online promotion and selling of MMS as a Covid treatment from inside a Colombian jail using a smuggled gadget, CBS News reported.

Secondly, Grenon was in jail awaiting extradition to the US for fraud charges in connection with MMS. The 64-year-old Grenon was recently extradited and his trial started at the Miami federal court in Florida, according to CBS News.

Lastly, MMS is chlorine dioxide, a bleaching agent that the FDA said is intended for treating textiles, industrial water, pulp and paper.

“Authorities said ingesting these products is the same as drinking bleach and can be fatal,” according to CBS News.

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