Well-Being

The COVID-19 patient given ivermectin after legal battle with hospital has died

Story at a glance

  • The patient’s wife, Julie Smith, wanted her husband to be treated with ivermectin as his condition worsened.
  • Hospital officials refused to give him the drug as it has not been approved for use against COVID-19.
  • A judge ruled in her favor at the end of August, forcing the hospital to administer ivermectin to her husband. A separate judge overruled the order weeks later.

An Ohio man whose wife sued a Cincinnati area hospital so her husband could be treated with the antiparasitic drug ivermectin has died following his battle with COVID-19. 

Jeffrey Smith, 51, died Sept. 25 after he was diagnosed with COVID-19 in July, his attorney Jonathan Davidson confirmed to the Cincinnati Enquirer. He was in the intensive care unit at West Chester Hospital for several weeks. 

Jeffrey Smith was treated with remdesivir, steroids and plasma during his hospitalization, but his condition continued to decline, and he was put in a medically induced coma in July, according to the Enquirer. 

Jeffrey Smith’s wife, Julie Smith, wanted her husband to be treated with ivermectin as his condition worsened and the drug was prescribed by a physician, but hospital officials refused to give him the drug as it has not been approved for use against COVID-19. 

Ivermectin is typically used for parasitic infections in animals such as livestock. It’s also used on humans suffering from intestinal parasites such as worms. However, it isn’t intended or used to treat viruses.


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But the drug has recently gained popularity as a treatment for COVID-19, despite scant evidence that it’s effective against the disease. 

Julie Smith then sued the hospital after it would not treat her husband with the drug, and a judge ruled in her favor at the end of August, forcing the hospital to administer ivermectin to her husband. 

The order lasted 14 days until a separate judge ruled the hospital couldn’t be forced to continue the treatment. 

“While this court is sympathetic to the Plaintiff and understands the idea of wanting to do anything to help her loved one, public policy should not and does not support allowing a physician to try ‘any’ type of treatment on human beings,” Common Pleas Judge Michael Oster said in the court order. 

Services for Jeffrey Smith were held Friday, according to the Enquirer.


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