Qld has legislated that if a Dr attempts to help a COVID-19 patient with hydroxychloroquine they face a potential 6 month jail term according to Dr Peter McCullough.
Dr McCullough was referring to a directive by Dr Jeannette Young, Qld Chief Health Officer which you can read fully here. It is suggested that the purpose behind the directive is to prevent a run on people stockpiling it, making it in short supply for those who need it for other purposes. While that is a genuine concern, and we agree fully that personally stockpiling any medical supplies should be stamped out, Australia has more doses of the drug than there are people, (according to reports that a donation of 32 million doses was donated to the existing stockpile last year.)
Our reading of the directive is that it is an oxymoron. It states the following:
- You can’t prescribe hydroxychloroquine unless you are 1 of 5 listed medical professionals. – Who else would be prescribing it except a medical professional, mainly a Dr and they are on the list.
- You can’t prescribe hydroxychloroquine except for treating a condition a list of which is described. – Surely each Dr has the right to determine what treatment is best for treating each patient. Global directives don’t work and are very dangerous.
- Pharmacists have to determine why the prescription is given and and if it is in accordance with the guidelines. – This is perhaps the most disturbing aspect of this directive. It is not and has never been the role of a pharmacist to determine what medication to dispense. They are not trained to do so, that is what Drs are trained for and why we send them to med school for 6 years and then intern for an extra couple before they can practice on their own. A pharmacists role is purely to dispense the correct prescribed medicine.
It must be acknowledged that the health officials have a very difficult job and it is made harder by the politicisation of the response to COVID-19. While there may be some genuine concern behind this directive, it comes across unbalanced and driven by fear instead of evidenced based analysis.