A physician from Iowa known for opposing COVID-19 vaccines and promoting the use of ivermectin to treat COVID-19 is suing a Missouri hospital over its staff vaccination requirements. In 2021, the hospital mandated COVID-19 vaccinations for staff, and the doctor’s request for religious exemption was denied. The lawsuit alleges retaliation and religious discrimination. Some social media users are commending the doctor’s stance against vaccine mandates for medical staff.
Risk level: Low
Recommendation: These types of events promote vaccine hesitancy by presenting a narrative that vaccine mandates are motivated by tyranny rather than public health concerns. This event may also perpetuate the false claim that ivermectin is a safe and effective treatment for COVID-19. It is recommended that doctors be prepared for patient questions about ivermectin, emphasize that ivermectin has not been shown to treat COVID-19, and advise patients that taking ivermectin for this purpose can result in poisoning.