Medical Disorders
Basic InformationLookupsLatest News
When Is It Time for a Knee Replacement?AHA News: Death Rates From Tears In This Major Heart Artery Are Rising, Especially Among Women, Black AdultsOmicron COVID Causing Severe Croup in Young Children'Zapping' Air Passages May Bring Relief for Severe AsthmaModerna Asks FDA to Approve Second Booster for All AdultsNew Tick-Borne Virus Is Spreading Across U.S.Memory Issues Plague Long COVID PatientsCOVID Vaccine Won't Cause Rare Neuro Events, But COVID Infection CouldIt Can Take Weeks for Some Patients With Severe COVID to Recover ConsciousnessOmicron Wave Had 5 Times as Many Small Kids Hospitalized Compared to DeltaPalliative Care Crucial After Severe Stroke, But Many Patients Miss OutMammograms Can Also Highlight Heart Risks: StudyPfizer Asks FDA to Approve Second Booster for SeniorsEven a Little Light in Your Bedroom Could Harm HealthRise in U.K. COVID Cases Closely Watched by U.S. Health OfficialsLong COVID May Bring Long-Term Lung DamageNew Malaria Treatment Gets First Approval for Use in ChildrenAbout 1 in 6 U.S. Couples Disagrees on COVID VaccinationCOVID Meds Appear to Work Against BA.2 Omicron VariantCould Depression Make Dry Eye Worse?When Will Americans With Diabetes Get Relief From High Insulin Prices?COVID's Global Death Toll May Be 3 Times Official NumbersDrug Could Be Non-Antibiotic Alternative to Treat UTIsFlu Vaccine No Match for Circulating Variants This SeasonLymphedema in Legs Strikes 1 in 3 Female Cancer SurvivorsScience Brings Shortcut to Spotting 50 Rare Genetic DiseasesU.S. Airplane, Train and Transit Mask Mandates Extended to April 18Man Who Received First Pig Heart Transplant Has DiedPfizer Begins Trial of COVID Drug Paxlovid in Kids 6 to 17Could a Stool Test Help Spot Pancreatic Cancer?Upcoming Surgery Worry You? Poll Says You're Not AloneHalf of Americans Live With Legacy of Childhood Lead PoisoningIn Reversal, WHO Now Supports COVID BoostersLooking to Neanderthals to Explain Today's Lower Back PainWhat's More Accurate, Blood Pressure Readings at Home or Doctor's Office?Begin Now to Protect Your Heart as Clocks 'Spring Forward'Brain Changes May Fuel 'Long COVID' Anxiety, ConfusionHow COVID-19 Can Change the BrainHeart Defects Could Raise Odds for Severe COVID-196 Healthy Steps to Preventing Colon CancerAHA News: These Three Risk Factors May Have the Biggest Impact on Dementia CasesU.S. Surgeon General Investigates COVID-19 MisinformationCould Your Blood Type Make COVID Worse?Implanted 'Drug Factory' Wipes Out Cancers in Mice -- Could It Help People?Immunization Against Common Infection of Babies Could Be NearTelemedicine Helped Many MS Patients During PandemicMore Years Playing Hockey, Higher Odds for CTE Linked to Head InjuryWhite House Unveils New COVID Response StrategyVariants of COVID Virus May 'Hide Out' in Body: StudyInfected People Gain Long-Lasting Immunity Against Coronavirus: Study
Questions and AnswersVideosLinksBook Reviews
Related Topics

Men's Health
Women's Health

Insurance Often Covers Ivermectin for COVID, Even Though Drug Doesn't Work

HealthDay News
by Robert Preidt
Updated: Jan 17th 2022

new article illustration

MONDAY, Jan. 17, 2022 (HealthDay News) -- U.S. insurers are paying millions of dollars a year to cover the cost of ivermectin for COVID-19 patients despite a lack of proof the anti-parasitic drug is effective against the virus, a new study finds.

Both the U.S. Food and Drug Administration and the World Health Organization say ivermectin pills — typically used to treat parasitic infections like worms — should not be used for COVID-19, except in clinical studies.

However, some doctors continue to prescribe the drug — and many insurers are paying for it, researchers found.

"Insurers usually don't cover ineffective treatments, or at least make patients pay for most of the cost," said study leader Dr. Kao-Ping Chua, a health care researcher at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor.

"Our study suggests that they are treating ivermectin prescriptions for COVID-19 differently," Chua said in a university news release. "In doing so, they are reducing barriers to an ineffective drug that some are using as a substitute for COVID-19 vaccination or evidence-based treatments."

Interest in the drug surged in December 2020, the authors noted. But instead of protecting against the virus, the use of a medicine typically reserved for horses and cattle prompted a spike in calls to poison control centers across the country, according to prior research.

In this new study, an analysis of private insurance and Medicare Advantage claims from December 2020 through March 2021 revealed 5,600 prescriptions for oral ivermectin that weren't written for a parasitic infection.

The total cost per ivermectin prescription for COVID-19 was $58 for private plans, which paid 61% of this amount, or about $36. The total cost per prescription was $52 for Medicare Advantage plans, which paid 74% of this amount, or about $39. Patients paid the rest of the cost.

Based on these findings, the researchers calculated that private and Medicare plans may have paid $2.4 million for COVID-19-related ivermectin prescriptions in the week of Aug. 13, 2021 alone.

At that rate, insurers would spend nearly $130 million a year on ivermectin prescriptions for COVID-19, according to the study. The results were published online Jan. 13 in the Journal of the American Medical Association.

Insurers should match their coverage of ivermectin with the level of medical evidence surrounding it — just as they do for other medications, tests and procedures, the authors advised. They should also require doctors to justify prescribing ivermectin during the pandemic by filling out a prior authorization form, they added.

"To be clear, clinicians may still prescribe ivermectin for COVID-19, and patients can choose to pay for these prescriptions themselves. Our point is simply that insurers shouldn't cover these prescriptions unless ivermectin proves to be an effective COVID-19 treatment," said Chua, a pediatrician and member of the university's Institute for Healthcare Policy and Innovation.

More information

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention cautions against using ivermectin to treat COVID-19.

SOURCE: University of Michigan, news release, Jan. 14, 2022


Amazon Smile


Children and Adult services are available now with no wait time.  

Please contact HBH at 860-548-0101, option 2.


powered by centersite dot net