New Delhi: The World Health Organisation has red-flagged against the use of 'ivermectin' in COVID patients, a day after the Goa government's approval to administer this drug as a preventive drug.
"Safety and efficacy are important when using any drug for a new indication. WHO recommends against the use of 'ivermectin' for COVID-19 except within clinical trials," Dr Soumya Swaminathan, the global health body's chief scientist, tweeted on Monday.
Dr Swaminathan has attached the statement of German healthcare and life sciences giant Merck, to her tweet to support her argument.
Merck said its scientists continue to "carefully examine findings of all available and emerging studies of 'ivermectin' for treatment of COVID-19".
"...to-date, our analysis has identified: No scientific basis for a potential therapeutic effect against COVID-19 from pre-clinical studies; No meaningful evidence for clinical activity or efficacy in patients with COVID-19 disease, and; A concerning lack of safety data in the majority of studies," it said.
This is the second WHO warning against 'ivermectin- which is an orally administered drug used to treat parasitic infections in the past two months.
Earlier in March WHO had said there is "very low certainty of evidence" of the drug's effect on mortality or hospital admission.