Picture: Physician and Professor Patrick Vallance explains how by allowing infections in the UK population Boris Johnson (sharing the platform) will flatten an imaginary curve, save the NHS and give herd immunity from the engineered virus leaked or released from the Wuhan Institute of Virology. 12 March 2020
The Ivermectin Controversy and Boosting Immunity
One would think that our Government’s highly qualified medical advisors and Boris Johnson, using their British common sense, would think that a search for existing medication that can be repurposed to counter SARS-Cov-2 would be a good idea. Ivermectin appears to be a good candidate.
In my article of 3rd November 2021 I mentioned the not-for-profit Front Line Covid Critical Care Alliance (CCCA) whose Director Paul Marik is Chief, Division of Pulmonary and Critical Care Medicine, Eastern Virginia Medical School. This group is convinced of the efficacy of ivermectin as an anti-viral which they include in their Covid-19 prophylaxis and prevention and treatment protocols. I’ll mention a few things here on prevention strategy based on what they say, using Boris Johnson’s British common sense.
Covid-19 Prevention and Prophylaxis
Boosting our natural immunity is the foundation of lessening the severity of infection. The starting point is to get as healthy as possible. The NHS has a lot on this so I won't go into it. Let’s consider what a prevention strategy might look like.
A prevention or elimination strategy for SARS-Cov-2 is naturally structured in stages comprising both government and personal action. It is a strategy of positive action and control using known and proven medical methods. Its objective is to reduce infection numbers and consequently illness, deaths and variant development. The UK government has never had such a strategy.
Public health strategies are first-line community measures to prevent spread of the virus by means of non-pharmaceutical (NPI) action eg motivational engagement by the government with the public, quarantine, test and trace, distance education for students, public education about the virus, provision of personal protection equipment (PPE), regulations, restrictions, coordination between public authorities and in desperation, lockdown. This is mass country-wide action that only a government can take. It’s simple and easy for everyone to understand and it’s very effective in reducing infection numbers.
2. Prophylaxis of the individual aims to minimize the number of virus particles available for infection. Masks, hand-washing, ventilation, HEPA air filtration and learned avoidance behaviour do this as non-pharmaceutical intervention for the individual. These are highly effective measures that can be greatly helped if good advice and PPE are available or provided by the government.
3. Prophylaxis by antiviral medication is a powerful means of defending the individual. Antivirals attack the virus chemically independently of the immune system. Ideally they should be taken regularly in advance of infection to be available in the body at the time of infection to kill it immediately or to slow viral replication. Slowing replication enables the immune system time to become activated. Together with a suitable mask this is a two-layer defence controlled by the individual that is potentially very effective. Ivermectin is a candidate as an effective, safe anti-viral.
4. Prophylaxis of the individual by boosting the immune system makes it more efficient in eliminating the virus. Vitamin and mineral supplements are reported to be effective. They are safe and cheap. They need to be taken regularly to maintain effective body levels. The immune system is our natural defence that is excellent at fighting infection given some support. Antivirals are chemical attacks directly against the virus rather than working through the immune system.
5. Should infection and viral replication commence, prophylaxis has failed. Pharmaceutical intervention is necessary, possibly with hospitalization. Treatment by antivirals aims to kill virus particles that have infected the body as early as possible when virus numbers are at a minimum. With an infection of low virus numbers an antiviral might kill them all or reduce their numbers (the viral load) to assist the immune system. Should mass replication occur a variety of clinical treatments is available. Ivermectin is said to have anti-inflammatory effects that are helpful at this point in addition to its anti-viral properties.
The CCCA say that the following are immunity boosters. Vitamin D, Vitamin C, Elemental Zinc, Quercetin and Melatonin. Vitamin D3 and C with zinc are cheap and safe in the doses sold over the counter. They also recommend omega3 oils, readily available in oily fish and capsules over the counter - also very safe. These are taken daily. Quercetin seems to have serious toxicity potential and melatonin might not be safe. I’m not recommending anything here. I’m commenting on what the CCCA say. All of these medicaments should only be taken on doctor’s advice.
The CCCA have given us the formula, out of their clinical experience, for an immunity booster that for most people can do no harm and will probably be helpful. Similarly from their clinical experience they recommend ivermectin as an antiviral (SARS-Cov-2) prophylactic. I mention their clinical experience because it appears that many medical practitioners have used ivermectin in cases of Covid-19 but have not carried out random double-blind placebo trials on large groups with peer-reviewed publication. Anything else is not recognized. This sort of thing isn't possible in a hospital emergency or critical care unit which removes the possibility that valuable knowledge can be gained there from trying medication that is different from standard protocols. There are excellent reasons why such informal results cannot be accepted at face value but equally they should not be rejected automatically. I would speculate that in such cases it is done with knowledge of research that has not been applied in mainstream medicine. In the case of ivermectin, President Trump recommended it as evidently having been treated with it himself, so it must have some value. Many dismissed it out of dislike of President Trump, but there seems to be good reason to believe that the reason for its rejection for Covid-19 treatment is because it undermines the vested interests of pharmaceutical companies and their billionaire owners.
There are recommendations that vitamin K2 might be needed to prevent calcium loss when high doses of vitamin D3 are taken. Vitamin D is a hormone that acts at gene level by switching on beneficial genes according to the vitamin level in the body. It's probable that everyone living in mid and northern European latitudes has a lower than optimum level of vitamin D and should take a supplement. This is a video in which two ex-NHS doctors have a discussion about vitamins, the immune system, Covid and the NHS. They’re loquacious but worth listening to if you have 40 minutes to spare.
Ivermectin as an Antiviral
The CCCA claim from their experience that ivermectin is an effective anti-viral that is extremely safe, cheap and can be taken over long periods prior to infection. It is therefore able to attack the virus at the time of infection when its numbers are lowest, slowing replication or eliminating infection. Should infection be detected, the protocol has the ivermectin dose doubled so that the antiviral aids the immune response in its double attack. Ivermectin is a well known pharmaceutical that has been used for many years to treat both human and animal parasitic infection.
Ivermectin for Covid-19 Treatment
When elimination by ivermectin and the immune system fails to prevent mass viral replication the CCCA still administers ivermectin for treatment of symptoms, among other medication. This is because following infection, inflammation causes blood vessel damage with further consequences and ivermectin is an anti-inflammatory as well as an anti-viral.
The Ivermectin Controversy
The Times tells us that Gilead Science’s antiviral Remdesivir will cost us £1,900 for a five day course. By contrast, an Israeli doctor says that using ivermectin (in the same circumstances as Remdesivir) would cost less than $1 per day and it’s effective. According to the Dept of Health and Social Care Guidelines the action of Remdesivir is to prevent viral multiplication (replication). It is to be administered to hospitalized patients. I discussed the use of the Merck antiviral for hospitalized patients in my article of 3 November 2021 using a diagram from the CCCA that demonstrates that by the time a patient is admitted to hospital with severe symptoms, mass viral replication has already occurred and replication has almost ceased. At this point an antiviral will have very little effect on the course of the disease. Damage to blood vessels from inflammation from this point on is due to past infection and the immune system is in danger of coordination breakdown (cytokine storm) from its reaction to dead viral fragments.
The CCCA asserts that timing is critical for the administration of antivirals and treatment
medication. If their assessment of the progression of infection in Covid-19 is accurate, the administration of Remdesivir to patients with advanced symptoms will be of little or no value. It will be too late. Furthermore Merck, Gilead Sciences, Government drug approval agencies and critical care clinicians might have misunderstood the importance of timing in the course of infection when using anti-virals. I am basing what I say on information from the CCCA web page but if correct it is important information and should be urgently investigated.
If ivermectin is in fact a cheap, effective antiviral that can be safely taken prior to infection, we must enquire, ‘Why is ivermectin not approved by world government regulatory agencies, particularly the USA’s FDA and UK’s MHRA and WHO that oppose its use?’ The independent internet consensus is that if widely used, ivermectin would be used preferentially to the pharmaceutical companies’ outrageously expensive antivirals and vaccines. The billionaires like Bill Gates who own them would lose control of the public’s behaviour and the stream of government money for vaccines and PPE. Remember Gates’ and Soros’s buyout of Mologic. It’s pocket money for the super-rich to lobby politicians and pay off decision-makers. Academics and researchers dependent on jobs or grants from the pharmaceutical companies or government know what attitude to adopt without being told. An effective and cheap anti-viral would have enormous advantages in cost, logistics, self-administration by the public and effectiveness. It’s preferable to never-ending vaccination which is impractical in any case and keeps variants and deaths high. A cheap, safe anti-viral is part of the route to realistic control or elimination of the virus rather than the ‘hope’ policy of the Government and its advisors. Ivermectin needs to be taken seriously.
There are many reports favourable to ivermectin from independent controlled trials and several mass trials in countries that do not have access to vaccines. Some are on the CCCA web page. Some trials and papers are included below.
Formal government and pharmaceutical company trials report that ivermectin has very little or no beneficial effect on Covid-19 infection. One would expect this of the pharmaceutical companies and I would speculate that there is very little scope for experiment in the NHS even with very safe medication such as ivermectin. The expectation would be to follow recommended protocols.
An Oxford study published as a pre-print showed excellent results for ivermectin but was withdrawn in July 2021 apparently due to mysterious objections, apparently based on lack of peer review rather than open refutation. Peer review is a voluntary hit-and-miss process that was examined by the last Parliamentary Science and Technology Committee. It’s a dodgy informal process that can easily be used to block publication of papers threatening special interests that are backed by big money and lack of scruples. Anyone who believes that the pharmaceutical companies have any sort of ethics hasn’t been paying attention to what they’ve been doing in pushing damaging drugs such as opioids in the USA and price gouging as mentioned - Remdesivir priced at £1,900 per 5 day course. I recall the drug thalidomide, sold in the UK among other countries to pregnant women as its target market although it had never been tested on pregnant women. It caused severe foetal damage and deaths but was not withdrawn immediately even when this was known. My wife took it during her pregnancy. We consider ourselves very fortunate to have had a child with normal development.
Ivermectin for Prophylaxis and Treatment - Some Examples
India, Uttar Pradesh: The State Government announced that there are no active cases of the coronavirus disease (Covid-19) in 33 districts of Uttar Pradesh. About 67 districts have not reported a single new case of the viral infection in the last 24 hours, the government said, noting the steady improvement of the Covid-19 situation in the state.
Argentinia, Tucuman Province: Pre-exposure use of ivermectin for prophylaxis and treatment for health workers is positive .
UK: The Evidence Based Medical Consultancy in Bath has studied the use of ivermectin in combatting Covid-19 and strongly recommends its use as an anti-viral:
Japan had a huge drop in infection when it switched to ivermectin.
UK’S NICE guideline for managing Covid-19 admits some ivermectin benefit but rejects use due to doubts (page 186 para. 7.13
UK Government Policy
The simple strategic outline above has used some of the material from the CCCA website to contrast it with UK Government policy. UK government policy was from the beginning to induce ‘herd immunity’ in the population by allowing the virus that was killing people to infect young healthy people who only had minor or no symptoms, while allowing 300-600,000 deaths. Run-away infection was to be limited by bringing in various restrictions as judged necessary and telling vulnerable people to stay at home which was considered to be 'protection'. Nothing active was ever done except to make vaccines available after tens of thousands of deaths had occurred. Test-and-trace has been overwhelmed and appears never to have had any effect at all. When vaccines became available the hope was, and still is, to get herd immunity by relying on vaccines to limit severity of illness, symptoms and hospitalizations. Hope isn’t scientific or part of medicine.
Government policy isn’t even wrong. It’s crazy as public health policy although it doubtless makes sense to those with special interests. It doesn’t count as a strategy. Strategy is about systematic control. It has resulted in an enormous number of unnecessary deaths with three or four infection peaks and lockdowns with SARS-Cov-2 becoming endemic in the UK. The whole point of a pandemic strategy is to create control and save lives, to prevent disease, illness and deaths by blocking infection. It’s not to begin by allowing mass deaths as was planned and actually occurred.
Government policy has been disastrous because it did not rest on standard medical practice but on a very large number of assumptions about the virus. The SAGE Committee and the Government:
Assumed that it was irrelevant that SAR-Cov-2 originated in Wuhan where the Institute of Virology was known to have created human-infective viruses.
Assumed that ‘herd immunity’ can be achieved with SARS-Cov-2 despite knowledge that they had about its origin from the WIV and that it was probably engineered
Assumed (or claimed) that SARS-Cov-2 was a natural virus from an unknown animal while ignoring the probability, from information that they had, that it was a human-modified virus with completely unpredictable characteristics, such as the long-covid phenomenon and high rate of mutation to become more dangerous.
Assumed that vaccines would enable 'herd immunity' to be achieved.
Assumed that the virus would mutate in a benevolent manner.
Assumed that the established medical practice of preventing disease by preventing or blocking infection need not apply.
Assumed that avoiding overwhelming the NHS should be a primary objective achievable by permitting infections rather than the objective of preventing infections, counter to all medical principles.
Assumed they knew how the virus and its infection curve would behave based on a ‘flu model.
Assumed that the virus’s statistical behaviour when exponentially increasing would permit control ‘at the right time’, which was nonsensical and failure either to apply exponential behaviour to reality or wilful mis-application.
Assumed that permitting infections would 'flatten the curve' and avoid overwhelming the NHS.
Assumed that their strategy did not require non-pharmaceutical public health measures
Assumed that it was legitimate to save lives in the future by allowing mass deaths (3-600,000) in the present rather than to safeguard the future by preventing infection and saving lives in the present. This is an astonishing, ridiculous conception of a public health policy.
And so on...
By contrast, the strategy that I have outlined above requires no assumptions whatever. It does not matter whether the virus is human-modified or not, whether it is predicable or not, nor what its future evolution will be. The general strategy and decisions within it have the objective of reducing transmission and infection at every point where they might occur. One learns about the virus’s behaviour from observation and research and adapts tactics to counter it with the objective always of reducing transmission and infection. It is an active strategy that protects the country’s citizens from its borders to the individual treated in hospital. It is the sort of strategy used by China, Australia and New Zealand to exclude, suppress and eliminate the virus.
The government and its advisors do not know the difference between a policy and a strategy. A policy is merely a decision for a course of action. A strategy is about systematic control. The outline Covid strategy above controls the critical points that govern the progress of infection in the community. I would mention that having taught business strategy at Masters level, I know that everyone thinks that they are a natural strategist. Very few people understand the concept, particularly those from specialist backgrounds who find it difficult to think more widely about their specialism. In the case of SARS-Cov-2, ready-made pandemic strategies already existed but the SAGE Committee and government chose to ignore them in favour of an ad-hoc created policy that ignored basic medical principles.
I listened with disbelief a few months ago to the learned Professor Sir Andrew Pollard, head of the Oxford Vaccines Group outline his vaccines strategy to the Parliamentary Science and Technology Select Committee on 16 June 2021. At this time a great deal more was known about the virus. Nevertheless, despite everything that has occurred, Sir Andrew outlined a vision of a stable relationship with the virus in which hospitalizations are prevented by an on-going program of vaccinations that would counteract breakthroughs due to adverse mutations. With the virus infecting every country in the world, observed frequent mutations with increases in infectivity and lethality, the possibility of other as yet unknown adverse mutations, and the logistics of administering vaccines regularly for an unknown period, there could be no possibility of a stable vaccination-controlled situation being achieved. Add to this the inability of many countries to effect more than marginal control of the virus in the foreseeable future, shortage of vaccines world-wide, cost due to profiteering by the pharmaceutical companies and lack of international cooperation due to politicization of the pandemic and Sir Andrew’s vision is absolutely impossible. I wrote to several Committees to say that Sir Andrew’s vision was based on hope, not science. We may indeed hope that the virus will attenuate or exhaust itself in some manner as other pandemics have in the past, although at huge human cost. In the meantime we must adopt a realistic zero-Covid policy to attempt elimination of the virus. SARS-Cov-2 is demonstrably dangerous and unpredictable, characteristics that require respect for the virus with realistic thinking and planning. It is prudent to adopt a worst-case view. Two years have been wasted by our leaders and their advisors who, judged by their strategic ability and valuation of human life have abysmally failed the country.
There is an alternative explanation to the Government’s Assumption Model that I have outlined above. The alternative is that the government is following a plan that has nothing to do with saving life and like the Iraq war, is actually achieving its objectives despite deaths, protestations of mistakes and good intentions. We need much more information from the Government, particularly who introduced the ‘herd immunity’ strategy, Bill Gates’ involvement in vaccines policy and his and his billionaire friends’ predatory purchasing of UK companies, vaccine rights, influence on the homicidal response to the virus and profiteering.