May 6, 2021 -- A 68-year-old woman with COVID-19, who has been in intensive care in an Illinois hospital for a month, started receiving the controversial drug ivermectin (Stromectol) this week after her family sued the hospital to have someone administer it, according to a report in the Chicago Tribune.
Nurije Fype's daughter, Desareta, filed suit against Elmhurst Hospital, part of Edward-Elmhurst Health, asking that her mother receive the treatment, which is approved as an anti-parasite drug but not approved for the treatment of COVID-19. Desareta Fype has been granted temporary guardianship of her mother.
The FDA has published guidance titled ,"Why You Should Not Use Ivermectin to Treat or Prevent COVID-19" on its website. The National Institutes of Health said there is not enough data to recommend either for or against its use in treating COVID-19.
On Friday, DuPage County Judge James Orel ruled Fype should be allowed to get the treatment.
Three days later, according to the Daily Herald, the lawyer for the hospital, Joseph Monahan, argued the hospital could not find a hospital-affiliated doctor to administer the ivermectin.
The Herald reported the judge told the hospital to "get out of the way" and allow any board-certified doctor to administer the drug.
When Fype's doctor was unable to administer it, the legal team found another doctor, Alan Bain, DO, to do it. Monahan said Bain was granted credentials to work at the hospital so he could administer it Monday evening.
In a follow-up hearing on Tuesday, Monahan told Orel that the hospital asked 20 doctors and 19 other health care workers, including nurses and pharmacists, to administer the medication and they all declined, the Herald reported.
Orel denied a request from Desareta Fype's lawyer to order the hospital's nurses to administer further doses. The judge also denied a request to hold the hospital in contempt of court.
According to the Herald, the judge said at the hearing Tuesday, "Now let's hope the good Lord allows the medication to work."
The hospital did not respond to Medscape's request for comment on the legal case or the patient's condition by publication time.
According to NBC5 Chicago, Desareta said Tuesday, "She looks calm, comfortable, and I'm happy with her monitor numbers so far. They are kind of stable."
According to the Daily Herald, Desareta Fype said in court documents that she is willing to release the hospital from liability if the drug harms her mother.
The Daily Herald also reports that Fype's attorneys cited arguments by the Front Line COVID Critical Care Alliance that ivermectin has antiviral and anti-inflammatory benefits that help people infected with COVID-19.
Ivermectin is an anthelmintic used mainly to treat roundworms, threadworms, and other parasites.