The activities of importing, advertising, selling, manufacturing, including compounding, Ivermectin as a COVID-19 treatment are for the purpose of clinical trials only, said Malaysian Pharmacists Society (MPS) president Amrahi Buang.
He said the MPS received a circular from the director of the National Pharmaceutical Regulatory Agency (NPRA) regarding the matter.
“We received the circular dated Aug 4 and, according to it, the Ministry of Health (MOH) has no restrictions on the use of unregistered Ivermectin products, but only for clinical purposes,” he said when contacted by Bernama today.
Amrahi, who shared the circular, said it was the responsibility of all licensed pharmacists to ensure all instructions were complied with.
This, he said, was to prevent the illegal use of Ivermectin products in ensuring that the public only obtained quality, safe and effective products during the current COVID-19 pandemic.
The circular also stated that any form of advertising of poison products, including Ivermectin, was disallowed under Medicines Advertisement Board policy.
As such, pharmacists must ensure that activities of importing, manufacturing, including compounding, and selling of Ivermectin raw materials or products containing Ivermectin for the purpose of treatment of COVID-19 infection other than under clinical trials should be stopped immediately.
Advertisements related to the material or product should also be stopped immediately and not repeated in any media, added the circular.
Meanwhile, Amrahi hoped that licensed pharmacists would wait for the MOH to finish its clinical trials on COVID-19 patients in 12 government hospitals with regard to the effectiveness of the Ivermectin product.
“We should get the result of this study next month, so let’s wait for it,” he said.
He also urged the public not to pressure pharmacists to sell or obtain the medicine for them for the purpose of COVID-19 treatment, adding that pharmacists who did so would face stern action.
Previously, Health director-general Tan Sri Dr Noor Hisham Abdullah said the MOH would conduct clinical trials on 500 patients to evaluate the effectiveness of the use of Ivermectin.