South African authorities approved the use of a drug used to control parasites in humans and livestock to treat coronavirus patients.
The medicine, known as ivermectin, will be allowed for use on compassionate grounds in a controlled-access program, the head of the South African Health Products Regulatory Authority said Wednesday. Medical practitioners who apply to the regulator to use the drug will be considered on a case-by-case basis, Boitumelo Semete-Makokotlela said.
Ivermectin has been used for decades to treat livestock infested with parasitic worms, while in humans it’s used as a topical ointment for diseases including skin infections and inflammation. The World Health Organization has suggested the drug has encouraging effects on coronavirus, though like other regulators it’s also said the medication hasn’t been properly evaluated.
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