Demand for ivermectin on the rise in Arizona to treat COVID-19 despite warnings

Despite continued warnings from national and international health officials to not use it for COVID-19 treatment, ivermectin continues to fly off the shelves.

In Phoenix, feed and farmer supply shop, The Western Ranchman Store, is struggling to order more.

"They'll be gone today," store employee Joe Robinson said of the store's ivermectin supply. And they were – in less than 5 minutes.

The horse dewormer medication, with a horse on the label and apple-flavored, has been flying off the shelves.

"We used to buy a box of 12 which would last us like a month," said Robinson. "Now we buy boxes of a hundred and that would last us about a month - and now we can’t even get it to sell it."

Many people have turned to the drug to fight a COVID-19 infection despite strong warnings from officials with the FDA, CDC and World Health Organization.

The CDC says it’s not authorized for COVID-19, saying there is insufficient data to recommend it.

Nationally, poison control centers have reported skyrocketing calls about symptoms associated with ivermectin toxicity like rashes, nausea and vomiting.

Banner Poison and Drug Information Center in Arizona said there has not been an increased number of calls or any new exposure cases.

Robinson said the store doesn’t give any advice when people come to buy it.

"There’s so much stuff on the internet, and that’s what people are going by," he said. "That’s what they want to do, so be it."

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